2 kill, 4 shot, presiding officers detained over bribery in 4th phase UP polls

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Dhaka, May 7: The fourth phase of Union Parishad (UP) polls is being held in 725 unions amid sporadic incidents leaving two killed and dozens injured across the country on Saturday.

Besides, presiding officers in Sherpur and Comilla districts were detained by mobile courts due to their alleged involvement in vote rigging and bribery.

However, the casting of votes started at 8:00am and will continue 4:00pm without any break.

Taposh Chandra Das, 38 in Comilla while Sumon, 27, in Narsingdi were killed in polls violence.

A man was stabbed to death and five others injured in a clash between the supporters of two member candidates at Chandla Bazar in Brahmanpara upazila in Comilla during polling period.

Police said an altercation ensued between the supporters of two member candidates—Sultan Ahmed and Rezaul Karim of Chandla union parishad in front of Chandla Primary School polling centre around 11:00 am.

At one stage of altercation, both the groups attacked each other, leaving five others injured, said Badiuzzaman, officer-in-charge of Brahmanpara Police Station.

During the clash, the supporters of Rezaul Karim stabbed Taposh Chandra Das, 38, son of Kanu Chandra Das of Chandla village, leaving him dead on the spot, said the OC.

The injured were rushed to Brahmanpara Upazila Health Complex.voters

At least four people including a presiding officer were held in the district in an allegation of vote rigging before the start of the election early Saturday.

According to sources, four people, including the presiding officer, entered Jugirthat Primary School polling centre early in the morning and started stamping the ballot papers before the start of election.

On information, police rushed in and arrested presiding officer Mobarak Hossain and three other outsiders from the centre and the authorities later suspended voting there.

In Narsingdi–aA supporter of an independent chairman candidate in Sreenagar union of Raipura upazila was stabbed and wounded in an attack by the supporters of the ruling party Awami League candidate over capturing Rangpur Polling Centre in the upazila.

Azharul Islam, officer-in-charge of Raipura Police Station, said the supporters of AL-backed chairman candidate Riaz Morshed Khan Russel swooped on the Rangpur polling centre and tried to occupy the centre.

At one stage, the AL supporters stabbed Sumon, 27, a cousin of independent candidate Azan Chowdhury, as he tried to resist them, leaving him critically injured and later died.

Later he was rushed to a local hospital.

Mizanur Rahman Chowdhury, chairman of Sreenagar upazila, said Sumon was being taken to Narsingdi General Hospital.

In Mymensingh, voting in a polling centre was suspended as miscreants snatched away ballot papers in Naogaon union of Phulbaria upazila.

Police said a group of miscreants swooped on Shapla Government Primary School polling centre around 10 am and snatched away the ballot papers.

Being resisted, the miscreants vandalised furniture of the centre, forcing the authorities to suspend balloting promptly, said presiding officer Akhil Tarafdar.

On information, police rushed in and fired eight rounds of bullets to bring the situation under control.

However, no one was injured in the incident.

In Feni: Four people were shot in a clash between the supporters of two member candidates over taking control of a polling centre in Shuvopur union of Chhagolnaiya upazila.

Shamsul Alam Sarker, assistant superintendent of police, said men of two member candidates of Shuvopur union locked in an altercation over taking control of Jagannath Sonapur Government Primary School polling centre in the upazila around 7:45am.

At one stage, both the groups exchanged fire, leaving four people injured.

Law enforcers brought the situation under control.

The injured were rushed to Chhagolnaiya upazila health complex.

In Sherpur: A mobile court here on Friday night sentenced a presiding officer to seven days’ jail and a member candidate to one month’s jail over a bribe deal ahead of the 4th phase of UP election in Hatibandha union of Jhenigati upazila.

Sources said Saiful Islam, a member candidate of Hatibandha union parishad, provided Tk10,000 as bribe to Abdul Barik, a presiding officer of Loykha Government Primary School polling centre.

The deal was made half a kilometre away from the polling centre around 10pm.

As the act came to local people’s notice, they caught the duo red-handed and beat up presiding officer Abdul Barik.

On information, police rushed in and rescued Barik.

Later the authorities withdraw the presiding officer from the polling centre and produced the duo before a mobile court.

The court handed down the jail terms to them.

Mokhlesur Rahman, district election officer, said a presiding officer named Nazmul Haque was appointed for the polling centre.