Information and Broadcasting Minister and Awami League joint general secretary Dr Hasan Mahmud on Sunday said the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD) held a press conference based on false information to divert people’s attention before the elections.
“I read the report of CPD where they claimed that 75 percent of our development budget comes from foreign aid, which is completely untrue, ‘absolutely wrong and bogus’. Thirty five percent of our development budget depends on foreign aid which was less before,” he told reporters while replying to a query at his office at secretariat in the capital.
Earlier, the minister unwrapped the cover of a book named ‘Sangbadpotre Sheikh Hasina’r Bakthrita 1981-1986’ published by Press Institute Bangladesh (PIB).
PIB director general Zafar Wazed and the daily Sangbad managing editor Kashem Humayun, among others, addressed the programme.
Hasan Mahmud said the report was made with much wrong information. In fact, they wanted to divert people’s attention before the elections.
The minister said the CPD claimed that about Taka 92,000 crore including the loans taken by different big groups have looted. It is true that there are some irregularities which were published earlier in different mass media. There is nothing to do research and everyone knows it.
He said such organizations like CPD is needed for the sake of development of the country. But the CPD did a ‘gross mistake, it is not a silly mistake’.
Replying to another query over anti-election campaign carried out by BNP, Dr Hasan Mahmud said the administration and police are now under the jurisdiction of the Election Commission (EC). The EC will implement their own decision, he said, adding their directives help to hold a free and fair election.
The Minister said a festive mood has been prevailing centering the election. Thirty political parties out of 44 registered parties are taking part in the upcoming election slated on January 7 and there are, on an average, six candidates contesting in every constituency.
Replying to another query over the comments of BNP leaders Ruhul Kabir Rizvi and Moin Khan, the information minister said they are dummy leaders of BNP. Their main leaders are Tarique Rahman and Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
Hasan Mahmud said the country became champions for five consecutive times during BNP’s regime. And now they are carrying out arson terrorism with that money.
In the programme, Hasan Mahmud said the book is very important document. “I’ve urged the PIB to publish a compilation of all the speeches given by Bangabandhu’s daughter Sheikh Hasina when she was in the opposition. They completed the series from 1981-1986. The works of one from 1987 to 1991, one from 1991 to 1996 and another from 2001 to 2008 are going on. I have given the book to the Prime Minister.”
PIB director Dr Kamrul Haque, researchers Akil Uz Zaman, Popy Debi Thapa and Mohammad Enayet Hossain, among others, were present at the event.