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Ershad rues his political fortune in grand alliance

Mannan Maruf<br>Senior Correspondent |
Update: 2010-08-26 00:20:26
Ershad rues his political fortune in grand alliance

DHAKA: Former President HM Ershad, who had ruled Bangladesh for nine years as a strongman, now passes his days in unhappiness, with most of his desires cherished in joining the grand-alliance government remaining unfulfilled.

Political analysts think that the situation is going beyond control of the ex-military ruler after the declaration of the verdict of the seventh amendment to the constitution that had legalized his takeover as military ruler in 1982.   

Besides, the internal bickering in the party is also intensifying day by day. On the other hand, his estranged wife Bidisha also disturbs him sometimes, according to his family sources.

Party-insiders said mental unhappiness sours his relations with party leaders and activists. “As a result, it is difficult to understand when he could behave rough with the party leaders,” said one source.     
Sources said premier Sheikh Hasina, the leader of the grand alliance, gave commitment to make Ershad President as it was his demand during the cobbling up of the alliance. “But, later, she backtracked on the commitment,” said one JP leader.

Besides, he was given commitment that at least three leaders of the party, including secretary-general ABM Ruhul Amin Hawlder and presidium member GM Quader, would be made minister.
That also not came true, the sources said.  Only Quader was taken in the cabinet.

“All of his desires got shattered when Ershad understood that the grand alliance turned into `power alliance`,” said another source, wishing anonymity.

Ershad was conspicuous by his absence from the function of the first anniversary of the grand alliance government though the prime minister had invited him, as he maintains a distance.  

His wife Rawshan Ershad was learnt to be very unhappy with him, as she was not made acting chairman though he went abroad several times for treatment.

As a result, family dispute is a common phenomenon between Ershad and the former first lady, Rawshan.

Ershad said, "There would be problems but we have to overcome that."

In an instant reaction over the seventh amendment cancellation by the High Court Thursday, he told that he was not thinking anything about it now.

“I’m respectful to the court verdict. I cannot say anything before going through the full verdict. We’ll let you know later on,” he told journalists after attending an iftar party in the city.           

BDST: 1750 HRS, AUGUST 26, 2010

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