Stray incidents of violence marked the post elections in the Union Parishad (UP) polls in different districts across the country and two more people succumbed to injuries due to election violence on Tuesday, raising the number of death toll to 13 till yesterday.Earlier on Tuesday at least 11 people were killed in Pirojpur, Cox’s Bazar, Jhalakati, Patuakhali, Netrakon and Sirajganj.
The deceased who died yesterday were Jabed Ali Bhuiyan, 45, a local Awami league worker of Bohail Union of Sariakandi upazila in Sirajganj distict and Monir Ahmad, 28, son of Abdus Salam of Sabrang Union of Teknaf upazila in Cox’s Bazar.
Police sources said Jabed Ali was critically injured when Awami League supporters tried to occupy a centre in Bohail union and locked in a clash with BNP supporters. He was admitted to Jamalpur Sadar Hospital but later he was admitted to Dhaka Medical College Hospital but died on Wednesday morning.
On the other hand, police officer of Cox’s Bazar Sadar Model police station Abdur Rahim said that a special team of police rescued Monir who received bullet injury in election violence but he died on the way to Cox’s Bazar Sadar Hospital.
In Bhola, supporters of winning chairman candidate backed by Awami League allegedly vandalised the business enterprises and motorbikes of the defeated BNP backed chairman candidate at Hazariganj union in Charfashan upazila yesterday.
BNP backed candidate Shahin Alam alleged that a group of winning candidate’s supporters suddenly smashed his business enterprise and looted cash.
Meanwhile, Election Commission (EC) said it would investigate the incidence of killing taken place in the first phase of Union Parishad (UP) polls across the country on Tuesday and take action in accordance with the investigation.
The Commission said it is not the time to say anything, who is responsible for the killing of 11 people in the polls in different districts, rather said police played their due role to safe life of polling officers and to maintain law and order situation before and after the polls.
“The law enforcers are deployed to maintain law and order so that voters can cast votes without intimidation. They can apply their force if necessary. It’s a matter of investigation why the force was applied,” EC secretary Md Sirajul Islam said yesterday.
He said this while talking to the journalists at his office in the EC secretariat in the capital.
“Some people were killed by firing in Pirojpore district. When the results were announced, some rowdy people intercepted the polling officers and attack them. It was the question of life and properties. Then the police played their due role legally, resulting in killing of some people. We have to wait for it why it happened and who were responsible,” Sirajul Islam said.
Asked about the action against the police officers who were in charges of several centres in Satkhira, he said, “The concerned police officers who were deployed in the centres in Satkhira have been suspended for the negligence of duty. At the same time the Superintendent of Police and the Officer-in-Charge of the district have been asked to explain why such incidents happened.”
“The incidents of stuffing took place at night in 13 centres out of 14 in Satkhira. The elections have been cancelled there. Police fired in two centres out of the 13 centres and police played due role and they deserve appreciation. But rest of the police in other centres failed to play due role. EC has directed us to take action against them,” he added.
He further said that the Commission will file cases against the responsible persons for the failure of duties in all the 65 cenres across the country.
About the voter turnout, the Secretary said, “At least 73.82 percent voters cast votes in the polls of 712 UPs. It’s a good turnout. The presence of women voters was remarkable.”
He also announced the result of 522 UPs out of 712. Of them, Awami League won 394, BNP 35, Jatiya Party 7 and independent 79.
He also said that the elections in 11 unions in Nagorpur upazila in Tangail district were held yesterday as part of the first phase of the UP polls. Besides, elections in two UPs in Teknaf will be held on March 27.