The TIME magazine has featured Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on the cover of its November 20 issue with a headline that reads “Hard Power/Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and the fate of democracy in Bangladesh”.
The New York-based influential magazine released the cover on its website yesterday. It also carried a piece summing up an interview that the magazine took at the Gono Bhaban in September.
In the conversation with TIME, Hasina said she does not see “the need to concede to BNP demands for a caretaker today”. “Under the BNP, elections were held in Bangladesh several times and every time was fraudulent and manipulated,” she told the magazine.
“Now they are demanding a caretaker. And now they demand for democracy. But when there was a military ruler in this country, and every night there was a curfew, and the people had no right to speak, no right to vote, and suffered a lot, they didn’t want a caretaker government then.”
She terms the BNP a “terrorist party” that “doesn’t believe in democracy”.
In her reply to the BNP’s allegations of ongoing repression against their party, Hasina brought up historical grievances.
“The BNP was formed by a military dictator who violated the constitution and kept army rule through guns.” “They say there is no democracy. But when there was a military ruler ruling the country, was there democracy? Even Khaleda Zia [BNP chief] ruled like a military dictator,” the magazine quoted her saying.
On the question of US sanctions on Rab, Hasina said, “They don’t need to put sanctions.”
“If anybody from our law enforcement agencies commits any crime, we don’t let it go, we punish them.”
She also talked about joining BRICS and the climate crisis.
Source: The Daily Star