Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has called upon the Awami League leaders and workers to carry out campaign for the party to retain state power, saying that the country will fall behind if any other party comes to power.
"Country's development will continue only if Awami League is there in power ... the country will fall behind if any other party comes to power," she told a civic reception organised by All European Awami League at Four Seasons Hotel here on Tuesday evening.
Sheikh Hasina said Awami League sincerely wants the country's development as it sacrificed a lot for Bangladesh. "It's a responsibility for the Awami League to develop the country and we would continue to do it Insha Allah," she said.
The prime minister said Awami League was born in the hands of the Father of the Nation. "The party which brought independence of the country could only make development of the country ... any other party other than AL could not do it," she said.
The prime minister also urged the expatriate Bangladeshis to start their campaign over the next general election. "When you'll return back home, you'll have to ask one question to your fellow-villagers whether they want development or not," she said.
President of All European Awami League Anil Dasgupta presided over the meeting, while Awami League leaders from different European countries addressed the function.
Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali and LGRD and Cooperatives Minister Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain were present.
Sheikh Hasina also urged the expatriate Bangladeshis living in different countries in Europe to work as ambassadors of Bangladesh and further brighten image of the country abroad.
"You will have to consider yourselves as ambassadors of the country and project the country's image in that way," she said.
Spelling out various development activities of her government, the prime minister said the country witnesses development when the Awami League comes to state power.
"The parties which ruled the country for 21 years after 1975 will have to be accountable that why they could not develop the country," she said.
In this connection, Sheikh Hasina mentioned that her government solved land boundary and maritime boundary disputes with India and Myanmar. "But the governments of Zia, Ershad and Khaleda Zia had no courage to raise the issue," she said.
The AL president also called upon her party leaders and workers living abroad to devotedly project government's massive success stories in various sectors among the people in their locality when they go to the country to win the next general elections.
Regarding agitation programmes by a section of people against development activities, she said there are some people who dislike everything.
"They always look for faults in everything and go for a movement. It's quite normal there'll be movement on each issue. Let them carry out their agitations, and let's do our development works," she said.
Talking about the election time all-party government in 2013, the prime minister said she had phoned Khaleda Zia and invited her to join the election-time all-party government.
"Even, I had offered her (Khaleda) the home ministry, but she didn't join it, she even didn't join the election; she tried to resist the election, " the PM said adding Khaleda Zia rejecting the invitation for dialogue in 2013 wanted to destroy country's democracy.
Sheikh Hasina said she had gone Khaleda Zia's house after her son Koko's death to console her, but she did not get a chance to enter the house as the gate was closed from inside.
Coming down heavily on Begum Zia for her party's mayhem and rampage before and after the last general elections as well as the first three months in 2015, the prime minister said they have burnt to death 157 people and scorched 508 others in the name of the movement.
"What could they give to the country through burning the people to death in the name of the movement? Why the people would keep confidence in those who play with the life of the people?" she said.
Turning to war crimes trial, Sheikh Hasina said the trial of war criminals is going on and some of the verdicts have already been executed.
The premier said Ziaur Rahman and his wife Khaleda Zia had rehabilitated the war criminals by releasing them from jail and making ministers and MPs.
"Those, who presented the nation flag to war criminals, should face the same punishment like the war criminals," she said.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina arrived here on Sunday on a four-day bilateral visit in conjunction with Budapest Water Summit 2016 at the invitation of Hungarian President Dr Janos Ader.
She is scheduled to leave here for home at 10.15 am local time (3.15pm Bangladesh time) today.
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)