BNP chief Khaleda Zia has stepped up pressure on the government not to join the multi-nation Asian Highway project which may give India a road corridor through it, saying foreigners were preparing to "grab" the country.
Bangladesh government has decided to join the UNESCAP-mooted Asian Highway network. She called on all "patriotic forces" to be united to oppose the project.
Asking people to raise their voice against the alleged move to give "corridor" and the government’s silence about the Tipaimukh Dam, she said, "It is time for all, especially the members of the civil society, to prove their patriotism."
The UNESCAP drafted an Intergovernmental Agreement on the 1,41,000 kilometers of standard roadways crisscrossing Asian countries and linking them with Europe.
The UN body proposed three routes in Bangladesh -- AH1, AH2 and AH 41. The first one suggested the highway to enter into the country from western Benapole frontier and exit to India through northeastern Tamabil through Dhaka.
"Efforts are on to grab the country by destroying its institutions," she was quoted as saying by the New Age.
"The BDR [Bangladesh Rifles] has already been destroyed. Moves are on to destroy the army. The border is open. They are constructing Tipaimukh Dam although the country [Bangladesh] is still suffering the adverse impacts of Farakka barrage opened during Awami League’s rule,’ Khaleda, also the leader of the opposition in the parliament, said.