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Christian Democrats most influential in Europe


Mokarram Hossain

Recently, an event, country's politics based on religion, highly strokes the concentration of all levels people of Bangladesh vis- scholars, politicians, civil society members and general masses also and is deemed as one of the grave issues for the country. Several so-called intellectuals, party members and even parties claim the ban on religion-based political party to the government of Bangladesh i.e. election commission.

Chief election commissioner, at the outset of their demand, falls into dilemma and espoused their demand in its smootish sense, but currently, has put his right speech to confer its continuity in the political process of Bangladesh in a way that it is beyond our surveillance. No provision of the constitution of the 'People's Republic of Bangladesh' does articulate the ban on religion-based politics.

We, in this regard, may adjoin scores of instances in different Europe-American states' advanced democratic system where political parties are activated on how and what extent? Is there no politics or political party based on religion?

Germany, the country is known for her extension in knowledge, science, art and literature and also her diverse newly inventions at different areas. Karl Marx and Hegel are called the pioneers of last century's dominant theory, 'Socialism' and their birth place is the Germany. Sigmoid Freud, the father of the theory of 'Freudian Sexualism' was a Swiss-German. Besides, is there anyone who doesn't know the name of Albert Einstein, the greatest scientist of the thousands of year is the progeny of this country? In Germany, the name of the present ruling party is 'Christian Democratic Union' and associate of this party is another religion-based party namely 'Christian Socialist Union'. Angela Marcel, the current chancellor of Germany, is the chief of this party and for long time, they are known as one of the biggest parties in Germany. They ruled various provinces but no one raised the question on the ban of this party for a split second.

United Kingdom (UK) is the pioneer of west minister type of democracy and this country is highly considered the one of the sparkling follower of democratic standard if we cite two countries who rigorously practice the democracy in the world. In this country, a party namely 'Scottish Christian Party' is lied more validly and they, in 2004, gained 1.8% of total vote through partaking in the European parliamentary election. The Queen of Britain is the chief of Anglican Church. Besides, the bishopric 25 seats are reserved in the House of Lord in England.

The Netherlands is one of the democratic countries in Europe. A four-party alliance government is now in power. The name of the biggest party of this country is 'Dutch Christian Democratic Party'. And the alliance party of coalition government is another religion-based party whose name is 'Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and the root ideology of this party is 'Christian Democracy'. 'Only Bible is the source of inspiration of a party member' is the main theme of CDU. Recently, this coalition government has shown their religious audacity through ousting 26 thousands immigrants (mainly Muslim) from the Netherlands.

Switzerland is called the country of neutrality, prosperity and natural beauty in the world landscape. Democracy is formed with its strictness. For this reason, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, most likely, uttered-'I would like to build Bangladesh as the Switzerland of Asia'. Now, one and a half dozens of political parties are lively playing their role in the country. Among these parties, three parties, such as 'Christian Peoples Party, Christian Socialist Party, and Evangelic Peoples Party' whose main foundation is the 'Christian Democracy'. 'Christian Peoples Party' is as old as 100 years of its tenure as a dominant figure in the field of politics. It was framed in 1912 and it is one of the partners of the coalition government of Switzerland. It was able to poll 15.0, 20.7 and 14.6 percent of total vote in the year of 2003, 2005 and 2007 respectively.

The country named Italy is called the 'state of multi-party democratic system' in the world and this country is one of the prosperous countries in Europe and it is the member of G-8. No party has been come in power with an absolute majority for long time there. Among the seven dominant parties of the state, 'Christian Union' is one of them where the representation of this party is more than 30 in the national parliament and popular support is also more than 4% .

One of the well-off and democratic countries in the Europe is Austria. In this country, 'Christian Socialist Party' (CSP) was formed in 1893 under the leadership of Karl Lugar, the then Mayor of Vienna and the leader of 'absolute rightist movement'. Since liberation of Austria in 1945, CSP changed its name into 'Austrian Peoples Party'. In 2000, it constituted the government through erecting a coalition with another rightist party, 'Austrian Freedom Party'.

And only 2 years later i.e. in the election of 2002, it was able to triumph and form the government alone with the greater majority in the parliament. CSP party originated from religion bondage has been ruling the country since hundred and quarters years last and has been considered the main political party in the country. Besides, so many political parties based on religion in various countries like Denmark, Estonia, Albania, Haiti, Hungary, Lebanon, Norway, Syria, Sweden, Panama, Papua new genii, Bolivia.

Canada is one of the aspirated countries to the immigrants of the world. Immigrants of distinct languages and religions from various countries come through the process of migration to this country. With the help of Roman Catholic, in 2000, 'Christian Democratic Party' was formed in Québec, one of the well-known provinces of Canada. It is uttered in the main principle of this party that combination between the orthodox Christianity and Québec nationalism will be the principal motto of the party'.

This party, at all times, takes part sternly against the getting marriage of same sex, abortion, homosexuality etc. Very few days ago, 'United Religious Front', an umbrella organization of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Sheiks of Canada launched their agitation simultaneously from the Mosques, Churches, Temples, Synagogues and Guru duaras against the law introduced for the homosexuality.

Christian Democratic Union based on the slogan of Christian renaissance is working in the United States of America. In the website of party, it has been introduced that 'We would be quickly emerged as a third force in US against two dominant parties. We have to keep it in our focus of the successful episode of European Christian Democrats. Now, they are incumbent in various countries of Europe as well as in Germany.

Those who have joined in chorus in Bangladeshi-set-up for the ban on the politics based on religion claim themselves as the believer of scientific socialism. It's an interesting fact that a party named as 'Christian Democratic Party' is working more briskly in Cuba, dominant socialist state branded by sickle-hammer. Here all parties are forbidden except parties based on socialist values. So, this party, 'Christian Democratic Party' conducts its activities from Miami, a province in the United States.

Australia is the country well known for its multi-party democracy in the world. There are a dozen of political parties with their diverse ideologies existing in the country and among them, 'New South Wales Christian Democratic Party' is one of them. There are two members of parliament of this party in the present parliament.

This party is playing a crucial role in keeping up moral values among the Christian ideologists. Their move always goes stringently against abortion, homosexuality, pornography and marriages with same sex, etc. Fred Nile, the head of this party, came into scene stalwartly, prior to the election in 2007, for his speech against the Muslims' migration as immigrants in Australia and his demagogic speech was delivered to stroke the concentration of Australian government.

India, our neighboring country is familiar, as the largest democratic country in the world (by population). It is also called the secular state in pen-and-ink. But BJP, the orthodox ascendants of reincarnation who dream the throne of Ram, became the stuff of discussion for their stab in obliterating the Babri-Mosque, the old-time holy place for Muslim community by 500 years in India. BJP launched its journey in 1980 and it captured two seats in the election of 1984 and for the time being, in 1996, became incumbent authority within 15 years. After the discussion of Hindu based religion parties in India, we may add numerous political parties based on Islam is Muslim League, Jamiate Ulama-e-Islam, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind etc. In 1992, an embargo was imposed on religious based Islamic parties by the Indian Government subsequent to destroying Babri Mosque although Supreme Court of India compelled to revoke the ban on the politics based on religion.

Since more than 80% people of Hindu community are living in Nepal, it was called the Hindu majority country until May 18, 2006. Cattle, the deity of Laskmi, are forbidden to sacrifice by the Government of Nepal and even recognized as a national animal. Religious conversion is authoritatively forbidden in this case. According to Krishna Bhattacharya, an anthropologist in Katmandu, 'Nepalese Monarchy of 240 years basically originated from Hinduism'. Sanatan Religious Association, Nepalese Janata Party (BJP's Nepalese Brand) are the main religious based political parties which are the member of 'World Hindu Association', an umbrella organization of world Hindus.

Malaysia, in spite of being the country of third world, has highly come into sight for its notable process of development and tolerance triggered by the charismatic leadership in state-building process. Under the charismatic leadership of Mahatir Muhammad, 'United Malay National Party' ruled the country last 2 decades. Only the dominant opponent party (PAS) based on religion is prevalent and it experienced the ruling period of three provinces for long times and the name of Abdul Aziz, well- known to all to lead a simple life is the leader of this party in Malaysia.

There are numerous dominant religious based political parties in the Muslim countries as Hizb-e-Islami in Afghanistan, Al-Islah Party in Bahrain and Yemen, Ikwanul Muslimun in Egypt, Syria and Jordan, Hezbullah in Lebanon, Justice and Development party in Morocco, Islamic Front in Sudan, Annahdah Party in Tunisia, Justice and Development Party as ruling party and Sadat Party in Turkey, and Jamaat and Jamiat-e- Islami in Pakistan etc. Even in Maldives, the religion based party namely Adalat Party is highly remarkable.

It is vivid that taking part in religion based politics and capturing state power to be equipped with that of religious tools in Christian countries are easier than that of Muslim majority countries in the world. Ikwanul Muslimun, in spite of being one of the popular parties in the Middle East, was forbidden by autocrat rulers for many times. 'Islamic Salvation Front', the religion based Islamic party in Algeria, was not been able to arrive at its throne although it conquered 80% of total vote in a free, fair and impartial election in 1989. With the red signal triggered by western powers, Military Junta seized the power of the country in 1990. The chief of the Rafah Party and the then Prime Minister of Turkey Nazimuddin Arbakan was ousted from the office of incumbency for illogical threat done by the military of Turkey.

The one-sided propaganda of western media let the world people seem no politics based on religion in western countries. Religious parties merely are creating problems in Muslim countries. In Canada, America, Europe-is there any party named as Hindu, Muslim, and Christian, how is religion used in election propaganda before conducting election, are they (candidates) or not intense to prove themselves as practicing Christian among people, is any procession lead from the Church?-we should study more to comprehend the reality ardently.

In Bangladesh, those (political parties) who claim the ban on politics based on religion, their position in terms of owning vote, according to the Election Commission report, became as numeric data between 0.0 and 0.2%. The source reports that in the last National parliament election of Bangladesh held on October 01, 2001, they (leftist block) viz- JASAD(JSD), Workers Party, CPB, Shammobadi Dal, Democratic party and NAP got 0.21, 0.07, 0.1, 0.0, 0.01, and 0.0 percent of total vote respectively.

We should decide, whom we will follow, those who are developing their countries by practicing multi-party democracy, ensuring freedom of expressions, enhancing tolerance and harmony or those who are endowed with militarism, dictatorship, tyranny, all kinds of oligarchies etc. which habitually chuck the people into the black hole of autocracy for snatching people's freedom and individual liberty? 

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