Freestyle rigging in UZ polls: 'Law enforcers inactive'

Freestyle rigging in UZ polls: ‘Law enforcers inactive’


Our special Correspondent – It was 10:45am on Monday. We a group of journalists reached Jamtoil
Primary Government Scholl, a polling centre, about 10km South of Sirajganj town as Kamarkhand Upazial Parishad poll was held.
Two angry women were seen coming out from a female polling booth uttering that they could not cast their votes.
“The ruling party cadres snatched away our ballots and stuffed those in the ballot boxes after putting seals on symbols of their own candidates,” said one of them.Lutfor Rahman, a former head master of Jamtoil primary school, said he came to know that his vote was already cast.
“I cannot understand as to how my vote can be cast in absence of me in the digital era,” he wondered.
Sensing the presence of journalists, some eight to 10 persons wearing badges of pineapple, the election symbol of ruling party backed chairman candidate Motin Chowdhury hurriedly come out from the booth
one after another.
After entering inside the booth no- 4, the assistant polling we saw on sitting helplessly and showed how some young people forcibly sealed on ballot papers and put those into ballot boxes.
Some sealed ballot papers were still strewn on the table as the young people hurriedly left the booth. The presiding officer Moazzem Hossain said the ruling party men were active while the law enforcers were inactive. “The voters are angried I as a presiding officer am helpless.”
All these happened despite the presence of answer police and BGB personnel at the centre and its surrounding.
The Upazila Nirbahi Officer Israt Jahan came from nowhere angered serious to know about the vote rigging.
She caught one young man Foisal, 19 red handed for strapping ballots and handed him over to police.
The UNO asked police to beat him but they denied.
The UNO also seized 900 ballot papers sealed by ruling partymen illegally. Later Additional Deputy Commissioner and Returning Officer Safiqul Islam however advised the UNO to let the matter to the presiding officer.
“It would be better for him to decide how he would manage by suspending election or not to ensure that voters can cast their votes,” said the returning officer.
He told journalists that he was trying to ensure holding free and fair polls. Complains of rigging has been received from at least seven polling centre including Konabari, Bagbari, Jhatibalai, Madhunandina and Barokura poling centres of this upazila.
The other chairman candidates of the upazila parishad are—Abdul Aziz Sarker of BNP, Abdur Rahman of Jamaat and Shahidullah Sabuj of CPB.
In the 6th phase, elections to 13 upazila parisahds including Kamarkhand was held yesterday.
The BNP that boycotted the January 5 general polls is taking part in it though they complain of massive vote rigging.


Comments are closed.