AL holds festival of rigging: BNP

Staff Correspondent

The Bangladesh Nationalist Party alleged that the ruling Awami League had held a ‘grand festival of vote rigging’ after occupying the polling centres in the second phase of upazila council elections on Thursday and demanded re-election in polling centres that ‘ruling party terrorists’ captured.
The party claimed that ruling party goons, while capturing polling centres had shot dead BNP-led alliance activist Saddam Hossain at Sonaimuri in Noakhali.
‘Ruling party goons held a grand festival of grabbing polling centres by driving out polling agents and stuffing boxes with stamped ballot papers. They have unleashed terror in almost all the 115 upazilas during polling,’ the BNP’s joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi said at a news briefing at the party’s central office at Naya Paltan in Dhaka.
There were several news briefings at the party office all the day where the BNP alleged massive vote rigging.
Rizvi said that the Awami League had done throughout the day what the BNP had earlier feared that the ruling party would do.
‘We have received information all day long on the Awami League’s terrorism centering on the polls,’ he alleged.
‘The Awami League has lost in the maximum number of upazilas in first phase of elections which prompted it to snatch away votes for their favour by any means,’ he added.
Rizvi alleged that the Election Commission had gave indulgence to ‘AL terrorists’ in occupying polling centres for the win of AL leaders contesting the polls.
Terming the commission ‘spineless and subservient to the government,’ he said that it had been ‘deaf’ to the BNP’s allegations of vote rigging by the Awami League but it was keen on helping ‘AL terrorists’ to boxes with stamped ballot papers.
‘People cast vote for us when they get the opportunity but they are now snatching the votes at gun point. The police and the Rapid Action Battalion have become AL’s club-wielding forces,’ he said.
The acting BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, meanwhile, demanded re-polling in centers that ‘ruling party terrorists’ captured.
Fakhrul after placing a wreath on the grave of the late president Ziaur Rahman, also the BNP’s founder, at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, told reporters that the Awami League has betrayed its self by grabbing polling centres as people grab char land.
‘It has proved again that holding of fair elections is not possible in any way under the AL-led government,’ he said.

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