Bangladesh puts opposition leader Khaleda Zia under house arrest

DHAKA: The Bangladesh government has put the leader of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), the country’s main opposition party, Khaleda Zia under house arrest, as a part of its move to foil the December 29 march against upcoming elections, Dispatch News Desk reported.

On Tuesday, the BNP leader urged the people to march to the capital Dhaka on December 29 to protest against January 5 elections, saying that it was not an election but a shameless selection.

In a statement on Thursday, the BNP vice president Shamsher Mobin Chowdhury said that Khaleda Zia has been under virtual house arrest since yesterday. He said that police are not allowing anyone including party leaders and activists to meet her.

However, Deputy Commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police Lutful Kabir rejected the claim that Khaleda Zia was detained, saying that offices had enhanced her security outside her home in Dhaka’s upmarket Gulshan neighbourhood.

The opposition led by the BNP leader Khaleda Zia had announced that it would not participate in the upcoming elections unless a neutral caretaker government was installed and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the leader of Awami League stepped down.

On the other hand, the government insisted it would go ahead with the polls despite a boycott by opposition parties and major foreign nations announcing they would not send any election observers.