Bangladesh: The Politics of Exile

The Bangladeshi blogosphere heated up reacting to the drama of the process of exiling the two powerful lady politicians of Bangladesh.

Sheikh Hasina Wazed and Begum Khaleda Zia crowned the center stage in Bangladesh politics in the past few decades. They spearhead two different ideologies in Bangladesh, which instead of providing the nation a headway, divided the nation. The rivalry between the major two parties Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and Awami League (AL) have made the politics more confrontational and put the nation in chaos in recent times. This has resulted in declaring a state of Emergency on January 11th this year and the emergence of a military backed caretaker Government. The Government has taken control of the situation by putting many corrupted politicians behind the bar and suspending all political activities.

Now it seems they want to settle the score with the tradition of dynasty politics in Bangladesh by sending Hasina and Khaleda in exile.

The 3rd world view has details how Sheikh Hasina is being barred from entering Bangladesh. Rumi has details on the deportation attempts of Khaleda Zia.

The Bangladesh poet of Impropriety has the latest on the political situation of Bangladesh. Voice of Bangladeshi Bloggers summarizes a few international press reactions.

Asif at Drishtipat blog opines:

A group of 10 unelected people (.00000000001% of the electorate)has just decided that the lady, whose party won 22 million votes, (40%) of the total electorate in the last election and who is a citizen of Bangladesh, can not enter Bangladesh because she is percieved by them as a threat to the society. They also decided that leader of the other party that got the vote of the other 40% will also need to be exported outside. .00000001% has spoken for the whole country.

However Addafication sees this as an option to bring an end to legacy of politics these two leaders were thriving:

There’s a view that’s out there that says that because these politicians committed crimes, they have to be tried. I am not so sure that given the circumstances, exile is really such a bad option. It’s a low-cost option. On the one hand it avoids bloodshed. On the other, the uncertainties of a trial whose results could not be anything but political.

Rehan of Drishtipat Blog is apprehensive about the political vacuum that will create after the exile of these two leaders.

However there is also widespread support for this government so far and not all supports are without apprehensions. Ahsan thinks Bangladesh is now at a cross road:

The caretaker government, who was given the responsibility to conduct a fair election, seems to be taking steps that no one was willing to take in the past. Can the current caretaker government create an atmosphere where not only the old corrupt leaders are forever removed from the political scene; but also new leaders emerge to guide the nation?

Deshi Blog thinks that inexperience in politics would harm the Caretaker Govt.

Sending both Khaleda Zia and Sheikh Hasina to exile would certainly create more chaos in Bangladesh. How can democracy be established by taking away the fundamental rights of political leaders? The way the exile drama is being handled hints abuse of the power, rather than judiciousness.


  • Rezwan bhai – my continuing thoughts on the minus-2 situation…

  • Wotcher

    “How can democracy be established by taking away the fundamental rights of political leaders?” Puhlease. There are some political leaders who just don’t deserve to be in office. Voting fraud, money laundering, and murder do not a legitimate government make! Someone warn Egypt’s Hosni.

    I think the steps being taken to fight voting fraud are rather admirable. I also believe the country deserves a reboot as opposed to choosing the lesser evil.

    I might be wrong.

  • Mohd. Anisur Rahman

    I think the caretaker government of bangladesh is doing fantastic. We should give some times to them. People of Bangladesh likes their activities. After 5 years Bangladesh economic will be in the good position of the Asia.

  • Mehboob A. Ahmed

    Both the plaTical leaders have poven themselves beyond any doubt whatsoever they are useless , incompitant , dishonest , and selfseekers. Bangladseh will be much betteroff without them.
    People will be happy to see them out of the country.
    We have not forgotten the days – of hartal & aborodh day after day imposed by Hasina & Khaleda &the unsafe streets
    and dishonesty, of both the awami league and Bnp people.
    How come both thesen leaders did not know anything about it.

  • cha-am jamal

    no one should be jailed or exiled without due process and outside the rule of law but at the same time we may wish to request the battling begums of bangladesh to volunatarily remove themselves from politics as a service to their country so that the nation can get on with the serious business of government. bangladesh has the potential to be a rich country. its wealth has been denied by bad governance.

  • Ekram Kabir

    May I be allowed to give an analysis? This is what the media in Bangladesh is thinking. True, no one wants to see these ‘paler godas’ running the show in the future. Or is it? Isn’t that only a perception? Have they all appeal for pulling the crowd in the country. Absolutely not! No leadership has yet developed in Bangladesh other than these two persons. The government would make a mistake by forcing these twp persons out of the country; they would make them ‘Frankensteins’ from ‘monsters’. The government seems to be working with a one-track mind; it needs to be more analytical and capable to foresee things. Hasina and Khaleda may have been the devils of the devils, but – from a right’s point of view, they cannot be in any way sent away out of the country against their own will. If the people chase them out, it’s a different thing. Leaders who chased out of the country by the people, they don’t return in the future; but if they are forced to go, they return with bigger stakes. We could learn from the Philippines’ Marcos, Iran’s Pahlavi and Pakistan’s Benazir and Sharif. Benazir and Sharif were forced out, and it is certain that they would return to Pakistan with more power. Marcos and Pahlavi were chased out by the people….

    How does the government know that they have public support in Bangladesh? Have they asked the members of the public? TV talk shows? Newspapers? What the media did is that they have celebrated the ouster of the corrupt politicians…But has the media celebrated the arrival of this government in the true sense? If you look at the five years of BNP, Mr Hasan Masshud and Mr Moeen have perfectly witnessed the corrupt rule of Tarique as well as Khaleda. Has it only been three months they have realized that the leaders were corrupt and they need to be punished or removed? What were the generals doing all these years? Look at the advisers…when you try to project yourself as a ‘prophet’, you need to act like one; at least that’s what the people would expect. Digging just a few feet, one finds many flaws as far as their past records are concerned. How many of them have paid regular taxes. May be, these advisers are only there to keep a civilian face of the army. Look at a section of the media that is supporting the army-backed government. Why are they doing it? Do they mean good for the country? Or do they mean welfare for themselves?

    There are many questions to answer. If the army means business, they need to bring about a change in their strategy. The change should begin from making it clear to the members of the public that they are truly here on temporary basis. The people in Bangladesh react slowly, but then they do, they react. Wouldn’t that be more chaotic?

    Hey, I’m not predicting any doomsday, but these are pretty simple questions that are being asked everywhere by those who were quite euphoric about this government in the beginning.

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