REF: Veteran Awami League leader Suranjit Sengupta thinks losing a portfolio is “not a big deal” for party General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam.He said on Friday that it was the prime minister’s “prerogative to decide which minister will get what portfolio”.
“It’s her constitutional responsibility. This is an ongoing process.”Sengupta, a member of Awami League Advisory Council, was speaking at a discussion on current political situation at Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh auditorium in Dhaka.
He said: “There is no reason to raise a hullabaloo over (Syed Ashraf getting relieved of the portfolio).”Ashraf lost his job as LGRD and cooperatives minister on Thursday but remains as a member of the Cabinet without any portfolio.
Sengupta said: “Syed Ashraf is a politician from head to toe. He has been pursuing politics from his student days. He is a tested comrade and a member of a martyr’s family.
“I don’t think it is a big deal for him to have a portfolio or to be a minister.”
Sengupta, who had also lost railways portfolio during the 2009-14 Awami League-led government, said Ashraf would have to contribute to the national politics irrespective of his political position.
“So we have to keep confidence in our indisputable leader, the prime minister. Whatever has happened has happened in the interest of the country, party and democracy. There is nothing more to say here.
He said: “His (Ashraf’s) honesty, sincerity and patriotism are beyond question. He is an honest and polite politician.”
The Awami League leader urged BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia to come back to the path of democracy.
Referring to Khaleda’s cancellation of Saudi Arabia trip to perform Umrah, he said: “London has told her son (Tarique Rahman) that you can go but can’t return. That is why she is not going there.”
Sengupta announced that the Awami League would never give up “constitutional politics.”
The Awami League leader described the recent suicide of a freedom fighter at a Dhaka hotel for allegedly being insulted by a bureaucrat as heartbreaking.
He urged the government to form a committee comprising high officials to probe into the incident.