More awaited dialogue may end in fiasco
Wednesday, 01 October 2008

Though the people were or may be expecting a dialogue between the country's two top leaders that could contribute positively to resolving the political crisis , some others considered the proposal as a futile exercise given their mindsets and the protracted war of attrition. Meanwhile, the issue has taken a new turn with conflicting comments coming from the government, political parties and the initiator of the move. The proposal for a one-to one meeting 'in the interest of the nation' was made first by their common lawyer Barrister Rafiqul Huq earlier this month and Adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman spared no time to express his optimism about such a meeting signaling the government's eagerness to host it. Later, FBCCI president Annisul Huq also came out with open support for such a high-profile meeting. But in the latest development adviser Zillur retracting from his previous enthusiastic role on Thursday said that the two top leaders should take initiatives of their own for the dialogue. On the other hand leaders of AL and BNP appeared to be less enthusiastic about it. Acting AL General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam criticised the initiator of the planned talks, barrister Rafique ul Huq, and the businessmen who backed him up. Ashraf said they will consider the dialogue if an invitation comes from the government itself. This obviously angered Barrister Rafiqul Huq. BNP Secretary General Khandaker Delwar Hossain, on the other hand, said the planned dialogue would not yield any results since it has no goal or target yet. All these have enhanced the persistent skepticism about the success and even the holding of the talks between the two leaders who last sat face to face on October 23 in 1987 and have not been in talking terms ever since. It is true, many among the people of different sections believe that if the two leaders sit together and try sincerely to resolve the national problems the country would be benefited. But the over enthusiasm of the government side over the proposed meeting has by now created an impression that it wants Sheikh Hasina and Khaleda Zia to sit together and agree jointly to implement certain agenda of the rulers relating to election, the regime's policies and actions since January 2007 and the running of the state after the elections. But as things stands now, the proposed meeting between the two leaders seems more uncertain than ever.

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