Tajuddin's family to get AL priority | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, July 19, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, July 19, 2012

Gazipur By-Polls

Tajuddin's family to get AL priority

Family members of the country's first prime minister Tajuddin Ahmad will be given priority for the Awami League nomination in the Gazipur-4 by-elections, party insiders say.
The parliamentary seat fell vacant after Tajuddin's son Tanjim Ahmad Sohel Taj recently resigned as a ruling AL lawmaker.
Insiders say the AL will consider other nomination seekers if none from the Tajuddin family wants to contest the by-election on the ruling party's ticket.
With the main opposition BNP publicly stating that it will not take part in the election, the AL high command believes any of its candidates will win the Kapasia constituency where the party apparently has a bigger vote bank.
After his resignation from parliament, Sohel Taj on April 23 declared he would no longer be involved in active politics. The constituency fell vacant after his April 23 resignation letter was accepted by the Speaker on July 7.
Senior leaders close to AL chief and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina are in favour of any of Sohel Taj's three sisters -- Sharmin Ahmad Reepi, Simeen Hussain Rimi and Mahjabeen Ahmad Mimi.
However, family sources say none of the sisters will be interested in the election after their brother's resignation.
If they are not interested, the party might go for Sohel Taj's uncle Afsar Uddin Ahmad Khan, who was state minister for public works in the 1996-2001 AL government and at one point was asked to resign.
Kapasia AL sources say there is a dispute between Sohel Taj's family and Afsar Uddin, who has a little popularity among AL leaders and workers in the constituency.
Meanwhile, a section of central AL leaders is against the nomination going to any member of the Tajuddin family. They argue that this family "always puts Hasina in an embarrassing position".
Tajuddin was a close associate of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the top organiser of the country's Liberation War in 1971
Former lawmaker Mohammad Shahidullah, Supreme Court Bar Association General Secretary Mamotaz Uddin Mehedy, Kapasia upazila Chairman Motahar Hossain Mollah and Kapasia upazila AL President Azgar Rashid Khan are also prospective candidates in the by-poll.
Some of them as well as some local AL leaders have already started groundwork and are lobbying with the AL high command for the party nomination.
Under electoral rules, the Election Commission must hold a by-election for the vacant seat within 90 days beginning July 7.
"As far as I know, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina will consider the family members of Tajuddin Ahmad as she has sympathy for the family," AL Presidium Member Matia Chowdhury told The Daily Star.
AL Joint General Secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif and Organising Secretary Ahmed Hossain said they would work on the nomination once the election schedules were announced.
On the BNP's boycott of the by-election, Ahmed said the main opposition had taken the decision sensing their defeat in the poll.
He said if the BNP believed in democracy, it must take part in the election to strengthen electoral and democratic politics the country.

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