Monday, December 29, 2008

Jamaat affinity leaves Minu in dire straits

To cover his Jamaat loyalty, Minu's followers circulated leaflets identifying his rival grand alliance's Fazle Hossain Badsha as the godfather of underground operatives.

“For his pro-Jamaat attitude, he (Minu) lost trust of maximum party leaders a long ago. Now, he has no way but the support of Jamaat”, said a BNP leader seeking anonymity.

His electoral rival grand alliance candidate Fazle Hossain Badsha has talked about Minu's pro-Jamaat attitude and his role behind militancy quite louder than corruption charges during electoral campaigns. 

Ignoring those campaigning, Minu said it would not hurt his popularity. “People are aware that it was during our (BNP-Jamaat) rule when militants were arrested and tried”.

National hero AHM Kamruzzaman won this seat for the last time from Awami league in 1973. In later elections, BNP has won the seat. The constituency is considered to be important for politics in entire North Bengal.

Senior BNP leader Kabir Hossain won this seat in 1991 and 1996. Minu locked horns with Kabir when Minu got BNP nomination in 2001 forcing Kabir to contest from another constituency of Rajshahi-5. Minu with Jamaat support won the seat. 

The anti-Jamaat sentiment of Kabir, also the central BNP's liberation war affairs secretary, has been another reason of Kabir-Minu rivalry since 2001. 

Kabir-Minu cold war is back again this year, when Kabir chooses Rajshahi-3 and Rajshahi Jamaat Ataur Rahman, also close to Minu, submitted his nomination from the same seat. Kabir followers said, none but 'Minu in league with his Jamaat masters' planned fielding Ataur against Kabir.

Minu too did a lot for Jamaat during the BNP-Jamaat rule, said BNP insiders. He helped Jamaat build a stronghold on Rajshahi University campus and for establishing an economic support in the city, they added.

In addition to allegations of helping militancy and sharp infighting, Minu is passing hard times witnessing BNP in disarray for sky rocketing high prices of essentials, power and water crises.

Minu certified the militant kingpin Asadullah Al Galib in 2004 stating that he was not involved in militancy, but his government detained Galib for the charge.

Minu is also facing rivalry with a BNP faction that was led by former BNP lawmaker Nadim Mustafa who is now absconding abroad.

Despite the groupings, many Minu followers said, “Rajshahi BNP has no worth without Minu.”

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