Ashraful made a mistake
Friday, 26 September 2008

Barrister Rafiqul HuqBarrister Huq says on the former's comment

Staff Correspondent

Barrister Rafiqul Huq, who is trying to seat former prime ministers Sheikh Hasina and Khaleda Zia together, has launched an incandescent attack on the acting Awami League general secretary who had implicitly advised the top lawyer and the business leaders not to meddle with politics.

"If Ashraful has spoken taking aim at me, he's made a mistake. If he gave this statement aiming at me it is very sad," barrister Huq, coming out with all guns blazing, told on Thursday.
Earlier in the day, Ashraful suggested business leaders and barrister Huq, without taking names, that they had better not intrude in political affairs since the party had not received any message from the interim government about the proposed dialogue.
"But interestingly, a lawyer and business people seem to be overly intrigued by the possibilities of the meeting between the two leaders. I'd advise them to pursue their own professions and not bother the politicians," Ashraful had said to reporters after a meeting with acting British high commissioner Duncan Norman at his house.
Barrister Huq, who defends both Hasina and Khaleda in court, said: "I don't know Ashraful. He also does not know me. I have never spoken to him in my life."
"I've talked with Sheikh Hasina. After talking with Sheikh Hasina I've spoken of the talks between the two leaders across the table."
"I am a briefless barrister! That is why I am trying to talk politics, trying to meddle with politics!"
"There is no relation between my proposal to bring the two leaders across the table and politics. I spoke the people's mind."
Education adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman said recently that the government had approached the lawyer to help bring the two top leaders to talk issues.
Continued Huq, "If the lawyers should not do politics a third of the seats in the Jatiya Sangsad would fall vacant. At least one hundred members of our 300-seat parliament are lawyers."
"Not only in Bangladesh, in the UK, the USA, India, Pakistan, Malaysia and in many other civilised countries of the world a big number of parliament members are lawyers."
Barrister Huq has been trying to seat the former prime ministers together to discuss national issues and has said he spoke to both leaders.
Following suit, Annisul president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, which represents the business community, Annisul Huq, recently said they were also trying to get the two arch political rivals to sit across the table.
Barrister last week expressed hope that a dialogue between the two top leaders could be held after Hasina returned home after the Eid.
After returning from a seven-day personal visit to Singapore on Friday, he said, "The public opinion about the two leaders sitting together across the table is very strong. Can they ignore it if the public opinion is strong?"
"While talking with me Sheikh Hasina did not rule out sitting in talks with Khaleda Zia. She told me that she will make a final decision after consulting the party leaders and workers after her return home.
"On the other hand, Khaleda Zia has already expressed her interest."
He commented that a dialogue between the two rival leaders might take place after the Eid. He said the sooner a dialogue was held the better.
Hasina showed positive attitude towards the meeting, he added.
"She's been through a spell of poor health. It's been really bad. She's suffering from glaucoma. A surgery was required but could not be done."
Education adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman said recently that the government had approached the lawyer to help bring the two top leaders across the table to discuss the nation's many crises.

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