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Third phase UP polls Sunday: Violence feared

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 27th November, 2021 10:48:23 PM
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Third phase UP polls Sunday: Violence feared

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Some 1,000 Union Parishads across the country will go to the polls in the third phase on Sunday amid fear of violence in many areas.

Besides, voting will also be held in 10 municipalities on the day.

Incidents of violence resulting in deaths, clashes among rival groups, vandalism and torching of campaign offices have become widespread during the ongoing UP polls.

The polling will begin at 8:00 am and will continue till 4:00 pm without any break.

Out of the 1,000 Union Parishads, some 569 aspirants have already been elected unopposed. Of them, 100 are chairmen.

Aspirants of the ruling Awami League and independent candidates of 20 unions of Raypur and Ramganj upazilas under Laxmipur district cast doubt about fair polls.

Independent candidates alleged that ruling party aspirants and their supporters are issuing threats. However, the AL men denied such allegations.  

Independent candidate Ashiquzzaman of Hardi Union of Alamdanga lodged a complaint against the ruling party supporters for carrying out attacks and vandalizing vehicles.

He also filed a complaint with the Alamdanga police station. But the police said that no such incident took place there.

The same situation is prevailing in Sunamganj, Sylhet, Moulvibazar, Rangpur, Chuadanga and other districts. 

Incidents of clashes and chasing and counter chasing are often taking place centering the election campaigns.

Candidates are blaming each other for the violence.

Locals say that the clashes among the supporters of chairman and members candidates have been intensifying as the ruling Awami League is struggling to contain its rebels.

Against the backdrop of massive violence earlier, the Election Commission (EC) issued a strong note of warning and directed the field administration to take immediate action by intensifying intelligence activities to stop the violence in the ongoing Union Parishad (UP) elections.

Field level administration earlier apprehended more incidences of violence in Dhaka, Sylhet and Khulna divisions centering Union Parishad polls.

Law Minister Anisul Huq on Saturday said the violence during the ongoing Union Parishad elections happened largely because of personal and factional conflicts, and land-related disputes.

“Various opportunists or groups are trying to resort to violence against minority groups, women and children,” he added.

The minister also said the Election Commission is alert and vigilant about election-related violence.