Wednesday, March 20, 2019 | ePaper

Army deployment 7 days ahead of polls: EC

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Staff Reporter :
Army will be deployed as a striking force across the country seven days ahead of the general election, Election Commissioner Rafiqul Islam said yesterday.
The army will remain in the field till January 1, Rafiqul told journalists.
The latest development over the army deployment came on Wednesday evening, hours after BNP demanded immediate deployment of the armed forces for what they said to curb the "terror unleashed by ruling party men" across the country.
BNP Senior-Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir
Rizvi Ahmed, addressing a press briefing earlier in the day, said, "There is no alternative to deploying military to contain the extent of violence."
Earlier, the Election Commission decided not to deploy the army as a striking force in the election despite the clarion call from the opposition parties to deploy army with magistracy power.
Jatiya Oikyafront, an alliance of the BNP and several other parties, have long been demanding army deployment for holding a free, fair and credible election.
They fear of vote rigging by the ruling party, citing reasons that the election is going to take place under the partisan administration of Sheikh Hasina.
While declaring the first election schedule, Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda said that army would be deployed as a striking force for aiding the civil administration.

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