Why Biharis shall not be enrolled as voters | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, November 27, 2007 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, November 27, 2007

Why Biharis shall not be enrolled as voters

HC asks govt to explain

The High Court (HC) yesterday issued a rule on the government and the Election Commission to show cause within two weeks why the Urdu-speaking people living in different camps of the country, including "Geneva Camp" in the capital, shall not be enrolled as voters.
The court issued the rule on a writ petition filed by seven Urdu-speaking people, known as Biharis, living in Bangladesh.
The petitioners stated that around three lakh Urdu-speaking people have been living in Bangladesh. Of them, about two lakh people are eligible to become voter.
Barrister Md Rafiqul Islam Mia, counsel for the petitioners, argued in the court that most of them (Urdu-speaking people in Bangladesh) were born after the Liberation of Bangladesh.
He said those who were born before the Liberation have already expressed their allegiance to Bangladesh by their conduct and behaviour.
He also said nobody is stateless in the modern world even in accordance with human rights charter of the United Nations. "They have legal right to be the citizen of this country and enrolled as voter to exercise their democratic rights in the country", Rafique argued.
A division bench comprising Justice Nazmun Ara and Justice Abu Tarique issued the rule after hearing of the petition.
Respondents of the rule are-- the chief election commissioner, district election officer, the home secretary and the law secretary.

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