City elections drama to divert attention from movement: 20-Party

Though BNP leaders collected nomination papers to contest the polls, the party-led 20-party alliance on Wednesday termed a ‘serious conspiracy, blueprint and farce’ the announcement of schedule for Dhaka and Chittagong city polls at a time when its movement is close to victory.
In a statement, signed by BNP joint secretary general Barkatullah Bulu, the party also alleged that the government announced the city polls schedule to divert the 20-party’s movement to a different direction.“The Election Commission or the government is going to stage a deceitful election drama like the January-5 national election. The announcement of polls schedule by the government’s puppet Election Commission for three city corporations is nothing but a mockery with the entire people.
Earlier in the day, a six-member delegation of pro-BNP professionals under the banner of ‘Shoto Nagorik Committee’, led by Prof Dr Emajuddin Ahmed, placed a six-point demand to the Election Commission, including time extension to submit nomination papers for the Dhaka and Chittagong city corporation elections by two to three days.
But, the CEC rejected their demand for time extension to submit nomination papers for the Dhaka and Chittagong city corporation elections.
Some BNP leaders also collected nomination papers to contest the three city polls slated for April 28.
The 20-party party was critical of the Election Commission saying it is not necessary to be a very wise person to understand that the Election Commission is how much independent, impartial and powerful when a state agency set the election date for the commission violating its constitutional jurisdiction.
It alleged that no visible step has so far been taken to hold the election in a free, fair and peaceful manner though BNP and other parties were urged to join the elections.
The alliance said the Commission did not consult intellectuals, citizens’ bodies and civil society members before announcement of the polls schedule.
It observed that the commission did not hurridly announce the schedule by to complete the polls April as per the suggestion of the Inspector General of Police if it would have a desire to hold an acceptable election.
The 20-party demanded the government release its leaders and activists after withdrawing the ‘false’ cases filed against them.
It warned that the government will have to pay a heavy price if it does not take steps for holding a national election as per people’s will to save the country from violence and chaos.
The alliance also threatened to continue harsher programmes alongside its non-stop transport blockade until its demand is met.
The 20-party asked the country’s people to get united imbued with the spirit of the Liberation War on the occasion of the Independence Day to save the nation from autocracy. – UNB