Bangladesh Election 2018: What others are saying?
Since 30 December 2018 several analysts around the globe have examined the results of the election and its implications for the Bangladeshi politics. These analyses have been published in various newspapers and web portals. The primary focus of these pieces is the future of Bangladesh, particularly the future of democracy. It is not who won the election but how the victory was secured, and what it portends for the nation seem to be the central concerns expressed in these commentaries. There is a clear agreement among these analysts that democracy is the biggest loser and the country has entered into a one-party state.
I have gathered few of these analyses and sharing the links below with highlights from each analysis.
1. In Bangladesh polls, it is democracy that is the loser
“Wide allegations of rigging eclipses the landslide victory of the Hasina-led Awami League because, ultimately, it is democracy that has emerged as the loser in this election, and this is an ominous sign.” – Atimes.com
2. A disputed election and a dangerous new era for Bangladesh’s politics,
“With the opposition sidelined and the ruling party having secured five more years of rule through highly questionable means, Bangladesh has become something closely approximating a one-party state.” – CNN
3. Why Bangladesh’s landslide election result is bad for its democracy?
“That kind of margin of victory — 96 percent — was a result one might expect in a place like North Korea, not a democratic nation such as Bangladesh.” – Washington Post
4. The Bell Tolls on Bangladesh’s Democracy
“Is it the curse of poverty to ask for good, decent governance that delivers a sense of dignity for all citizens?” – The diplomat
5. A deeper look at the Bangladesh election
“What happened on December 30 clearly shows that Bangladesh has officially become a one-party state of an exotic variety, where elections take place, yet votes are not properly counted; where numerous opposition parties are allowed to exist, but are effectively rendered impotent and barred from ever reaching power; and where the raucous media are “free” but are only able to produce a self-censored cacophony of government-approved narratives.” – Al Jazeera
6. In Bangladesh, Sheikh Hasina’s landslide victory confirms that democracy is dead
“The only good to come from this General Election was confirmation that the government is authoritarian, and the existing political players, which includes a self-seeking civil society, are inept at serving democracy.” – Scroll.in
7. By hook, crook and ballot: Bangladesh’s prime minister wins a fourth term, in ruthless fashion
“The embarrassingly skewed tally suggested that the BNP was not really the biggest loser. The biggest loss was for democracy itself.” – Economist.com
8. No gain for democracy, or for India’s interests
“The Bangladesh election results are neither going to further democracy in that country nor India’s long-term interests in South Asia, and beyond.” – Asianage.com
9. Winning An Election, But Losing A Country?
“In the long term, it will be Bangladeshi society that will have to force a return to some basic rules of the democratic game.” – Tabadlab.com
10. Bangladesh: the people’s republic?
“Unless one has been living under a rock in total isolation, the mockery of the word ‘democracy’ was clearly obvious to anyone following the election process.” – Thenews.com.pk
11. “Why Bangladesh, a star in the developing world, looks pretty tarnished
“The simple truth is that Sheikh Hasina will not rule forever. Nobody can. And if her turn towards authoritarianism also tarnishes, in Bangladeshis’ minds, the Awami League’s principles of secular nationalism and inclusion, then the reaction will be awful indeed — and the implications for the stability of South and Southeast Asia will be even worse.” – Economic Times