None being held without a reason
Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda yesterday said police were not arresting anyone without any reason going beyond the Election Commission's directives.
He also refuted the BNP and Jatiya Oikyafront's allegation that a level playing field was not achieved and that the field level election officials were not following the EC's directives.
“A level playing field is there now. The police and the administration are under the control of the Election Commission. The police abides by our directives. It doesn't arrest anyone without any reason going beyond our directives,” the CEC told reporters at Nirbachan Bhaban in the city's Agargaon.
He made the comments after inaugurating the EC's three-day briefing for the executive magistrates on the electoral code of conduct.
Executive magistrates tasked with polls duties in 18 districts took part in the briefing yesterday.
Huda said, “The commission has given directives to the police. The police has also pledged that it will work in line with our directives.”
Responding to a question, the CEC said the government didn't give any directive to the EC on the December 30 parliamentary polls.
The EC's directives were being implemented at the field level, he added.
Huda said although the election would be held under a partisan government, the local administrations would work as per directives of the EC.
At the inaugural session of the briefing, the CEC and election commissioners Mahbub Talukder, Rafiqul Islam, Kabita Khanom and Shahadat Hossain Chowdhury were present.
During the three-day briefing, the EC is giving directives to the executive magistrates on how to conduct drives against violations of electoral code of conduct and punish the offenders.
Magistrates from Dhaka, Gopalganj, Cumilla, Gazipur, Munshiganj, Narayanganj, Tangail, Faridpur, Manikganj, Kishoreganj, Sherpur, Rajbari, Madaripur, Mymensingh, Netrakona, Jamalpur, Shariatpur and Narsingdi joined the briefing yesterday.
On November 12, the EC had directed the public administration ministry to appoint 612 executive magistrates at the field level to check the violation of electoral code of conduct.
The commission had asked the ministry to appoint one executive magistrate for each upazila, one for each three-four wards of city corporations, one-two magistrates for each district municipality and one for each three-four upazilas in the three districts of Chattogram Hill Tracts.
It had asked the ministry to keep the magistrates involved in polls duty till the day following the election.