'No army needed in Rangpur polls'
Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda yesterday said army deployment would not be necessary during the upcoming Rangpur City Corporation (RCC) polls.
Law enforcement agencies are capable of ensuring a free, fair and credible election, he told reporters after a meeting with officials entrusted with the task of holding the election on December 21, at the divisional commissioner's office in Rangpur.
Earlier in the day, during the CEC's meeting with the mayor candidates, BNP mayor hopeful Kawsar Zaman Babla expressed fear of vote rigging and asked for army deployment during the polls.
The CEC also told reporters that contestants would face tough actions if they attempt to buy voters with money or muscle power.
Along with the Ansar men, there will be 23 armed members of BGB, Rab and police at each poling centre, he said.
“The election will be free, fair and credible.”
The CEC also added that 22 mobile courts were conducting drives in the RCC area to prevent any violation of the electoral code of conduct. From today, a mobile court would be deployed at each of the 33 wards to monitor law and order.
“Army deploy is not necessity.”
He stressed that nobody violating the electoral code of conduct and deteriorating the law and order situation would be spared.
Asked about allegations that law enforcers were harassing BNP leaders and activists, he said, “They are not harassing anybody.”
The Election Commission has ensured equal rights of all, he said, adding that mayor candidates can setup six election camps in the RCC areas.
Besides, each mayor candidate can use a loud speaker in each of the 33 wards.
The Election commission is thinking about using EVM (Electronic Voting Machine) at one polling centre.
Mayor and councillor candidates, in their meeting with the CEC, demanded that ballot counts be finalised at the polling centres. They also demanded suspending of mobile banking services to prevent transactions of black money.