Polls in 717 UP on Saturday: 2 kill ahead of polls

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Dhaka, May 27: The fifth phase of polls in 717 Union Parishads (UP) to be held on Saturday but the Election Commission (EC) has failed to contain violence just before elections as two people were killed and several others were injured ahead of the elections on Friday.

On Friday, sporadic violence took two lives and several others injured in Narail, Kushtia,  Jhenidah and Savar outskirts of Dhaka despite deployment of law enforcers and magistrates in the election areas.

Violence has become a commonplace incidence in the UP polls under political banner as the last four phases of UP polls claimed over 80 lives and several hundreds injured. Such number of death toll was not seen in the past UP polls.

The Election Commission could not remove the tension of violence and irregularities from the minds of the voters as they could not do anything noticeable to offer a peaceful poll.

Every time before elections the Commission frequently says they are doing whatever is possible to hold peaceful polls but people are observing massive violence before and after the elections.

The last phases of UP elections witnessed the use of arms to gain supremacy in the polling station to cast votes in their favaour.

The earlier phases of polls saw that miscreants are casting fake votes while the law enforcers are standing silent. The incidence of stuffing ballot papers overnight, snatching ballot papers and using arms to occupy the centres was seen in the last phases of polls.

Even the presiding officers were caught red handed while helping the candidates in casting fake votes.UP polls

However, the EC sources said it has directed the law enforces to apply their highest power under law to curb violence and irregularities in elections.

Despite repeated assurance of the EC, two people were killed and several others were would including bullet injury in Narail, Kushtia,  Jhenidah and Savar outskirts of Dhaka yesterday.

In Narail, a man who was stabbed severely on Wednesday night died at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital yesterday after being injured in election violence between rival groups at Hamidpur union of Kalia upazila in the district.

The deceased was identified as Kashem from Bishnupur village of Hamidpur union of Kalia upazila.

Meanwhile, at least 12 people were injured bullet injuries in a clash between rival candidate supporters in Kalia upazila of the district yesterday.

Local sources said the supporters of Awami League (AL) candidate Harun Or Rashid and AL rebel candidate Moni Mia locked in a clash at Purulia intersection. Both groups use bullets that left 10 bullet injured.

The injured were admitted in Narail Sadar Hospital but the two of them –Jakir Sheikh and Humayun – were sent to Khulna medical colleges as their condition deteriorated.

In Kushtia, A restaurant owner was killed by unidentified miscreants in post poll violence allegedly by his rivals in the district. The deceased was identified as Shahin Ali, 30 who was a supporter of AL backed winning candidate Motaleb Hossain.

Police and local sources said a group of unidentified miscreants hacked him indiscriminately at Joarddarpara of Alchara union under Sadar upazila when he was returning home from his restaurant at midnight on Thursday night.

Locals rescued him and admitted to Kushtia 250-bed hospital in critical condition where he died on early Friday.Jhenidah

Family sources said Shaheen might be killed due to a conflict between the supporters of AL backed candidate Motaleb Hossain and Independent aspirant Siddiqur Rahman over the election of Alchara union Parishad.

Officer-in-charge of Kushtia Model police station Shahabuddin Chowdhury, however, said Shaheen was involved in different criminal activities in the area. Police could not arrest anyone for his killing.

In Jhenidah, at least 12 people were injured and more than 20 houses were vandalised and looted during pre-election violence at Abaipur union in Shailkupa upazila on Thursday midnight and Friday morning.

Local sources said the supporters of AL backed candidate Muktar Ahmed Mridha and independent backed candidate Helal Uddin Biswas locked in a clash on Thursday night and allegedly vandalised and looted 20 houses, leaving 12 people injured.

In Savar, miscreants burnt down two election camps of AL candidate at Vakurta union yesterday morning.

Under such a situation, the EC will hold the UP polls which will begin at 8am and continue till 4pm without any break at 720 UPs under 86 upazilas of 4 4districts.

A total of 3,254 chairman candidates will contest the polls. Of these, 1,727 candidates are politically nominated and the rest of the 1,527 candidate will contest from independent chairman post.

Awami League has its candidates numbering 726, BNP 629 and Jatiya Party 177. BNP does not have chairman candidates in 91 UPs.

A total of 42 chairman candidates have been elected unopposed from the Awami League banner.

The law enforcers including police, RAB, BGB, Armed Police Battalion and Ansar will be deployed in the elections areas to maintain law and order situation in the centres.

There will be 20 police and Ansar including a police officer in each polling centre to ensure security.

In each upazila 3 executive magistrates and one judicial magistrate have been deployed for rapid trial for the violation of electoral code.