Voting to determine the representatives and members of the 299 parliamentary seats of the 12th National Parliament will be held on Sunday. About 120 million voters of the country will seal their ballot papers in the parliamentary elections from 8 am.
As per the rules, the polling of the Naogaon-2 constituency has been suspended by the EC due to the death of an independent candidate out of 300 seats in the National Assembly.
Awami League and Jatiya Party are contesting in the 12th National Assembly election with 1500 and 450 independent candidates from 28 registered parties. There are 44 political parties registered by the Election Commission in the country.
The boycotting BNP has called for a 48-hour hartal from Saturday, the day before the polls. Before the polls, some polling stations including trains and buses were set on fire. 16 parties including BNP have boycotted this election.
The Election Commission (EC) briefed the local and foreign media about the overall preparations for the election at the Bangabandhu International Conference Center in the capital on Saturday afternoon. Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Kazi Habibul Awal expressed hope for an acceptable, participatory and transparent election.
Although the candidates of 28 political parties participated in the election, the main competition of the party candidates will be with the independent candidates. As many as 225 seats have independent candidates in this election. Most of the independents are supported by the ruling Awami League.
The entire country has been covered under the security blanket on the EC’s orders. The ground is now under the control of judicial and executive magistrates, army, navy and air force, BGB, RAB, police and law enforcement forces including Ansar.
Ballots are going to polling stations in the morning
This is the first time that the ballot papers are being provided on the morning of the polling day in the National Assembly elections. Of course, some centers are inaccessible; Ballot papers of 2,971 centers were distributed on Saturday.
There are a total of 42 thousand 24 centers in this election. Two lakh 60 thousand 858 polling booths. Out of these, ballot papers were sent to 2 thousand 971 centers in Durgam on Saturday. Apart from this, the ballot papers will go to the remaining 39 thousand 53 centers this morning on the polling day. Ballots went to these centers in the morning, but on the previous day (Saturday), polling officers and members of law and order forces went and prepared the polling centers.
The total number of candidates in the election is 1969
The ruling Awami League has the most candidates among the 28 parties participating in the 12th National Assembly elections. The number of candidates of the party is 265. Apart from this, 264 candidates of Jatiya Party, 135 candidates of Trinamool BNP, 122 candidates of National People’s Party, 96 candidates of Bangladesh Congress, 56 candidates of Bangladesh Nationalist Movement, total number of candidates of 28 political parties registered in Election Commission are 1 thousand 534. And there are 437 more independent candidates. In total, the number of final candidates for this election is 1 thousand 969. Among them, 1 thousand 1871 male candidates. 96 women candidates, 2 transgenders and 79 minority ethnic candidates are also contesting.
Among the 44 registered parties, the other parties that fielded candidates are – Islami Front Bangladesh, Islami Oikyajot, Krishak Sramik Janata League, Ganoforum, Ganofront, Zaker Party, Jatiya Party, Jatiya Party-JP, Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal-JSAD, Trinamool BNP, National Peoples Party, Alternative factions Bangladesh, Bangladesh Awami League, Bangladesh Islami Front, Bangladesh Congress, Bangladesh Kalyan Party, Bangladesh Khilafat Movement, Bangladesh Jatiya Party, Bangladesh Nationalist Movement, Bangladesh Tariqat Federation, Bangladesh National Awami Party (NAP), Bangladesh Nationalist Front-BNF, Bangladesh Muslim League, Bangladesh Supreme Party, Bangladesh Sansiktrik Muktijot, Workers Party of Bangladesh, Democrats and Communist Party of Bangladesh (ML).
Election law enforcement and judicial officers
More than 750,000 law enforcement personnel have been deployed to ensure overall security in the 12th National Assembly elections. Among them there are 5 lakh 14 thousand 288 members of Ansar. The police headquarters said that their 1 lakh 74 thousand 767 members will perform their duties. Among them, 80,000 policemen are performing election duty from the field. The remaining 94 thousand 767 people are performing the duties of polling stations. Among the country’s 42 thousand 24 centers, there are a little more than 10 thousand vulnerable centers. 14-15 members including two policemen, 12 Ansars will be on duty in each general center. 16-17 people including 4 policemen will perform duty in the vulnerable center. 15 members including three policemen in the centers of 8 cities including Dhaka and 16 members including 4 policemen in the high-risk centers of the city.
Among the members of the armed forces, 38 thousand 154 army members in 62 districts and two thousand 827 members of the naval force in partial areas of 19 districts including two districts will be on duty.
BGB will be responsible for 44 thousand 912 people (1151 platoons), Coast Guard 2 thousand 355 people (70 platoons). RAB has 5 thousand 560 people (600 teams and 95 reserve teams).
Meanwhile, 2 thousand 76 executive magistrates and 653 judicial magistrates are engaged in the election. Among them, the judicial magistrates have entered the field from Friday (January 5). They will be on duty for five days before and after the polls. Earlier, 300 election search committees were formed for 300 constituencies across the country. They issued a record number of summonses, summonses and fines to candidates and their supporters for various offences. On the recommendation of these committees, it has been decided to file a case against at least half a hundred candidates and their supporters in regular courts.
Domestic and foreign observers are staying in the field
Domestic and foreign observers will be in the field to watch the 12th National Assembly elections. Among them there are 20 thousand 773 domestic observers and 192 foreigners. Among the foreigners who applied, 192 observers and journalists were approved by the Election Commission (EC). Among them there are 126 observers and 76 media workers. 34 countries and four foreign organizations will monitor the vote.
The Election Commission currently has 96 registered domestic observation agencies. 84 of them are observing the elections this time. A total of 20 thousand 773 observers of these organizations are monitoring the election. As such, there are domestic observers in half of the total polling stations in the country. Among them, 517 people from 40 monitoring organizations will monitor the vote centrally and 20 thousand 256 people from 84 monitoring organizations locally.
Formation of Election Monitoring Cell
On the occasion of the 12th National Assembly elections, the EC has formed a monitoring cell of 22 members in coordination with law and order forces. This monitoring cell will be led by Brigadier General Abul Hasnat Mohammad Sayem, Project Director of IDA Project-II. As per the instructions of the Election Commission, the monitoring cell will be conducted for a total of 72 hours from 8 am on Saturday to 8 am on January 9.