BNP’s mayoral candidates in the elections to Dhaka’s two city corporations on Saturday said they were content with the Election Commission’s decision to give in to the demand from a number of quarters and delay the election.
The DNCC and DSCC elections will now be held on February 1 instead of January 30.Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) mayoral candidate Ishraque Hossain said “EC has taken a good decision. They should have considered the issue before announcing the election schedule. I think Hindus would be more pleased with the decision.”
Asked whether he accepts the change, Ishraque said “We definitely welcome the deferment as it was our demand too.”
He was talking to reporters at his residence in city’s Gopibagh soon after the announcement deferring the elections.
Meanwhile, BNP’s Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) polls mayoral candidate Tabith Awal came up with similar expression while talking to reporters at his residence in Gulshan.
“I am happy with the deferment. I applaud the EC that they have finally taken a decision in favour of people. It should have been decided earlier. The incident again proved their (EC) inefficiency,” he said.
Tabith Awal, BNP candidate in Dhaka North, sympathised with the SSC and equivalent examinees, as the deferment may affect their preparation for exams. .On December 22 last, the Chief Election Commissioner announced the election schedule for the polls fixing January 30 as the polling day.
Thereafter different quarters, including the Hindu community, demanded the deferment of the elections to the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) and Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) slated for January 30 since it coincides with Saraswati Puja.
Eventually mayoral candidates also urged the EC to reschedule the election so that the Hindu community could celebrate Saraswati Puja, one of their major religious festivals, without having to cope with some of the restrictive arrangements that accompany elections these days (e.g. in transport or mobile networks where polls are taking place).
Amid widespread criticisms and movement by a group of Dhaka University students, the Election Commission finally decided to defer the date at an emergency meeting on Saturday.
Later, Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda disclosed the development around 9:00 pm.