Ban on indoor politics lifted
We welcome the decision of the caretaker government to lift the ban on indoor politics from Monday, September 10. The timely decision, announced by the chief adviser to the caretaker government Dr. Fakhruddin Ahmed in a televised speech on Sunday evening, will pave the way for the political parties to exchange views with their party leaders and workers before sitting across the table with the EC officials. The EC on the other hand will have no legal bars left to organise such talks with the leaders of the major political parties on the electoral and reform agenda.
There was a common perception that further delay of the much-needed dialogue between the chief election commissioner (CEC) and the political party leaders beyond September 12 would give rise to all sorts of apprehension in the minds of the common people. The onus of creating a conducive environment for holding such dialogues rested on the government. Through lifting of the ban on indoor politics and reiterating its resolve to hold the elections in time the government has spelled out its mind regarding following the election roadmap.
Now that the ban has been relaxed, the dialogue between the EC and political parties should be held with no conditions attached to it. The envisaged dialogue would enable all the parties to open up sufficiently, discuss the problems and obstacles and eventually pinpoint the areas where reforms are needed most.
At this point we may recall that the major pledge of the caretaker government after declaring emergency was to hold a free, fair and credible elections after ensuring certain reforms taking place in the electoral system and the political parties. Now with the ban on indoor politics gone and the EC having no bar in organising the dialogue, we hope the political parties will now come forward with their specific reform proposals and implement then with all sincerity to make holding a credible election possible.