Dhaka, Nov 20 (UNB) – BNP on Tuesday voiced doubt whether the Election Commission (EC) wants to hold a credible and neutral election since police continued arresting their leaders and activists and filing cases against them.
“We’re in doubt whether the Election Commission is willing to hold a free, fair and neutral election. Police have been arresting opposition leaders and activists and harassing them even after the announcement of the election schedule,” said BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
Talking to reporters at BNP chairperson’s Gulshan office, he also said their party’s arrested leaders and activists are not been released on bail and the hearing on their bail petitions is being delayed as the EC is playing a silent role in this regard.
The BNP leader warned that the election will not be acceptable to people if the EC fails to ensure a level-playing field and stop the arrest of opposition leaders and activists.
Stating that police’s role came under serious question during city corporation elections, Fakhrul said they have got information that the government is working out a ‘blueprint’ to hold a stage-managed election using police.
The BNP leader said a police officer is also making plans sitting at the Police Headquarters to bring the election results in ruling party’s favour by manipulating and rigging votes.
He also came down hard on the Election Commission for not taking any step to recover both illegal and legal arms after the announcement of the election schedule. “It seems the Commission itself has taken a position that it won’t hold a fair election.”
The BNP leader said the EC is not playing any role in creating a level-playing field. “We hope good senses will prevail upon the Election Commission to properly discharge their constitutional duty by using their authority.”
Asked when they will finalise the candidates of BNP and their alliance partners, he said they will do it very soon.
Fakhrul said they took interviews of 279 nomination seekers from different districts under Chattogram division from 10am to 2:30pm.
They later started interviewing the aspirants of Sylhet and Cumilla divisions around 3:30pm.
Party acting chairman Tarique Rahman joined the party nomination board on Tuesday as well availing of the internet service.
Talking to reporters after facing the interview, BNP ex-assistant office secretary Abdul Latif Jony, who wants to get party ticket to contest the election from Feni-3 seat, on Tuesday morning said Tarique is taking interview through videoconferencing using another app as the Skype was blocked.