Joy, also the son of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, made this remark in an interview with private station Somoy TV, which was aired on Friday night.
Polling of the 11th National Parliamentary Elections for 299 seats will be held on December 30. All kinds of campaign and gathering for the elections was closed from Friday.
The ruling Awami League is seeking re-election for the third consecutive term with pledges to continue national development. Its arch-rival, the BNP, hopes the people will respond through ballot to the ruling party's bid to hide the lack of democracy behind the veil of development.
“I believe we’ve brought a great deal of development, both economic and social, to the people’s lives. Ours is one of the fastest growing economies in the world because of the government’s efforts. We’ve overseen a digital revolution,” said Joy.
He referred to the rise in per capita income, increased pay for public servants and apparel workers, and the surge in power generation along with distribution of free textbooks among school students as signs of development in past 10 years of Awami League rule.
“I believe the people will vote the Awami League for what it has done. Because they want the development to continue,” Joy said.
He claimed the Awami League has delivered on all the pledges it had made while the BNP, in contrast, had made Bangladesh “champion in corruption” and carried out killings and bombings.
The prime minister’s adviser said the Awami League will prioritise generation of jobs for the youth if it wins the election. “We’ve many plans on developing entrepreneurs.”
Joy said no-one can deny his mother’s role in cutting corruption.
“We don’t deny that corruption is still here in Bangladesh, But you’ll see the difference if you compare the level of corruption now with what it was 10 years ago,” he said.
In response to the BNP’s allegations of police harassments and attacks, Joy said sensing defeat, the party was out to throw the election into controversy. “Police will definitely hunt the murder suspects they (BNP) have nominated for election. I call them militants and terrorists after they burnt people alive between 2013 and 2015,” he said.
He also criticised the leaders of the Jatiya Oikya Front – Dr Kamal Hossain, ASM Abdur Rab and Mahmudur Rahman Manna – for forging alliance with the BNP ahead of the polls.
“They are speaking against corruption but at the same time they have joined hands with people convicted of corruption,” he said.
“MATTER OF SHAME”
Joy said it was “a matter of shame” that the BNP has given the leaders of the Jamaat-e-Islami, including family members of 1971 war crimes convicts, the opportunity to contest in the election.
The Jamaat opposed independence from Pakistan during the Liberation War and lost its right to field candidates in elections as a political party following court orders before the last election.
Around two dozen of its leaders are contesting in the election with the BNP’s ‘paddy sheaf’ symbol this time.
Joy said he had faced hostilities for being a grandchild of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman when he was a student in a Dhaka school.
“We had to go to the same class with the children of war criminals at Scholastica. Some teachers used to lower my grade points no matter how good I would write.
“The war criminals’ children tortured us. They tried to beat me up,” he said.
Joy, a naturalised US citizen who resides in America, also said he was not ready to join politics just yet.
Adding that he had missed his mother in his childhood because of her political commitments, he said, “I want to give time to my family until my daughter grows up.”