Dhaka, Mar 18 (UNB) – Voters in 16 districts across Bangladesh are exercising their franchise in the second phase of upazila election.
Balloting started at 8am on Monday and will end at 4pm in 116 upazilas.
A total of 377 chairmen, 548 vice-chairmen and 400 women vice-chairmen candidates are contesting the polls. As many as 17,909,006 voters are expected to cast votes in Thakurgaon, Rangpur, Gaibandha, Dinajpur, Bogura, Naogaon, Pabna, Sylhet, Moulvibazar, Gopalganj, Faridpur, Chattogram, Rangamati, Khagrachhari, Bandarban and Cox’s Bazar.
Already, 23 chairmen, 13 vice-chairmen and 12 women vice-chairmen contestants have been elected unopposed.
Security personnel, including police, Rab, BGB and Coast Guard, have been deployed in the election areas since Saturday. They are slated to remain there until Wednesday.
Besides, a judicial magistrate was deployed in each upazila and an executive magistrate for every three union parishads for the five days to punish any violator of the polls code.
A security team comprising of 14-16 members drawn from police, Ansar and VDP will guard each polling station.
The government announced a public holiday in the electoral upazilas for Monday.
The first phase of the election was held on March 10, while the third phase is scheduled to be held on March 24 and the fourth phase on March 31.
Bangladesh’s first upazila election was held in 1985, while the following three were held in 1990, 2009 and 2014.
The 4th upazila election was arranged in six phases after the 10th parliamentary elections were held in January 2014.