Bangladesh polls: Opposition storms out of Election Commission meeting

In the meeting, the alliance also raised the issue of debarring it from holding its wrap up election rally in the capital.

Published: 25th December 2018 09:50 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th December 2018 09:50 PM   |  A+A-

Thousands of army soldiers are being deployed across Bangladesh to provide security and help conduct national elections next Sunday (Photo | AP)


DHAKA: Members of Bangladesh's opposition BNP-NUF alliance on Tuesday walked out of an Election Commission meeting, alleging that the behaviour of its chief was "inappropriate" and he was not taking their arguments into consideration during the talks.

The opposition delegation led by National Unity Front (NUF) convenor and eminent jurist Kamal Hossain met Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Nurul Huda to discuss the alleged arrests of the coalition's supporters in police crackdown ahead of the general elections this week.

In the meeting, the alliance also raised the issue of debarring it from holding its wrap up election rally in the capital. It also accused police of playing a "biased role" against opposition supporters.

READ| 10,500 arrested ahead of Bangladesh elections

"We walked out of the meeting as the CEC was not taking into consideration our words," BNP's secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir told reporters after coming out of the meeting within half-an-hour it began.

The CEC's "behavior was inappropriate", he added. Alamgir is leading the party in the absence of jailed BNP chairperson and ex-premier Khaleda Zia and her convicted "fugitive" son and party's acting chief Tarique Rahman.

The opposition alleged police have arrested about 10,500 of their activists in a crackdown ahead of elections this week with an intention to create a "climate of fear".

However, police said no one was detained without specific charge and warrant.

BNP spokesman Rizvi Ahmed called the charges "fictitious" and an attempt to expose their activists to "ghost" cases" to favour the ruling Awami League party of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

Hasina and Zia have been political foes since the introduction of democracy in 1991.

They have traditionally alternated in power but Hasina's current rule has lasted since 2009 and Zia's jail term this year prevented her from taking part in the election.

More from World.


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp