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Expectations of people from the ongoing political dialogue April 14, 2008

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The advisers of the caretaker government started the preparatory talks for the dialog with the political parties though there was much hesitation and speculation regarding the dialog among different individuals, groups and political parties earlier.

AL initially responded coolly putting a bar on getting a written invitation but they ultimately attended the meeting with the advisers through a SMS call for dialogue and both the parties express their hopefulness on the outcome of the dialogue.

The advisers have started meeting and will meet with the other political parties and come to a consensus regarding different issues the nation is facing now.

The political parties may have their own agendas and they are actually expressing it off and on the meeting. But the government must separate the agendas of the political parties from that of the people.

The political parties are more concern about their leaders – their release and participation in the dialogue, their treatment at home or abroad etc. Government would consider their party agendas from perspective of the law, reality etc.

The people are more concern to see a free and fair election by the end of this year which will be free of corruption and muscle power, through which more literate and competent people will be ‘lawmakers’ of the country.

People also want to see a healthy democratic process to be exercised after the election and reformed political parties with democracy in themselves.

People also want to be certain of non repetition of the events that led to the 1/11.

People also want to see the institutional reforms and reforms in the constitution bodies to be continued even after the election.

People want to see that the Judiciary could play more effective role in future and a rule of law in real sense prevail in our country.

People want to see the next government and political leaders remain accountable to the people.

Trial of the war criminals and exclude them from the election would be an agenda in the dialog. Government should analyze it the with the reality of the ground.

People are also concern with the rise of price of essential commodities. Political parties is also projecting this as an agenda in the dialog. The issue will be discussed more as a problem and a failure on the part of the caretaker government. A bumper boro crops will have better effect on the price than all the words in the dialog.

People also want to see the local government elections to be held without the influence of the political parties. So the government should hold the local government elections as declared by the election commission road map.

Political parties are not only the stakeholders of democracy in the country. The other groups(citizen groups, people) also should be consulted. The political parties are against the discussion of the advisers with the citizen groups. But people want to see the citizen groups and people to be represented.

Above all, people want to see a positive outcome from the dialog for the country as a whole.

An ordinary citizen


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