5th phase UZ polls ends
Irregularities, arson afresh
Staff reporter :
The 5th phase of UZ polls ended on Tuesday in 23 upazilas amid incidents of torching voting instruments, capturing polling centres and snatching of EVMs.
Voting in the fifth and final phase of the upazila parishad election began at 9:00am and continued till 5pm without any break.
In Brahmanbaria, the activists of Chhatra League and Juba League tried to capture Boro Pukurpar Primary School centre in Pattan union of Bijoynagar upazila and snatched away the EVM, said Alamgir Hossain, Additional Superintendent of Brahmanbaria police.
In another incident of violence, an independent candidate Nasima Lutfur Rahman claimed that her house came under attack by unidentified miscreants.
The attackers torched a motorbike in front of the house and also looted 100 tolas of gold, she told the media.
Nasima held Awami League candidate Advocate Tanvir Bhuiyan responsible for the attack. However, Tanvir denied the allegation saying he was not even aware of the attack.
Following the attack, police detained five persons including former Brahmanbaria city unit Chhatra League leader Zohirul Islam Jumman,
said, Md Selim Uddin, Officer-in-Charge of Brahmanbaria Sadar Police Station.
At least 10 people, including an independent candidate, were injured in a clash in Kamarkhand upazila of Sirajganj.
Activists of Awami League (AL) backed candidate attacked the supporters of independent candidate Shamsul Alam Shafi at Chowbari Islamia Government Primary School centre around 11.30am, leaving 10 people including Shafi injured.
"Supporters of AL backed candidate Abdul Matin Chowdhury swooped on me when I left Dashshika Government Primary School centre after casting my vote. They injured me and tore my Panjabi," alleged Shafi.
The previous four phases of the polls were held on March 10, 18, 24 and 31.
For the first time in Bangladesh, political parties are nominating candidates for upazila polls for the post of chairman, vice-chairman and female vice-chairman.
But the turnouts of voters in the four phases of Upazila Parishad election were lower than the previous elections.
About 36.50 percent of voters cast votes in the fourth phase, according to data provided by the Election Commission.
EC data shows that turnout of voters was 43.31 percent in the first phase, 41.25 percent in the second phase and 41.41 percent in the third.
Voter turnout in the 2009 upazila polls was 70.57 percent; it declined to 61.23 percent in 2014.