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Dhaka Tribune

Rashid Sultana: Nominations for upazila election must be submitted online

  • Increased deposit considering the reality, she says
  • Committed to hold upcoming election in free manner
Update : 02 Apr 2024, 09:19 PM

Election Commissioner (EC) Rashida Sultana has announced that nominations for the upcoming upazila elections must be submitted online.

"Our country is moving towards digitalization. The whole world has advanced a lot. We are quite behind. We want to keep pace with the world. Unwanted incidents happen when candidates submit nominations. This will not happen with online submission," she said.

"Previously, there was an option to submit nominations in two phases. This time, submitting them online has been made mandatory,” she said while addressing a law-order meeting related to the sixth upazila parishad election at Shilpakala Academy on Tuesday as the chief guest.  

She also said: "There have been changes regarding the security deposit for candidates in the elections. The security deposit for Upazila Chairman is Tk1,00,000. For a vice-chairman, it is Tk75,00,000, and for a women vice-chairman, the deposit remains the same as before. Many have questioned why this increase was made. This system is very outdated, about 20-30 years old. It is unrealistic to keep the same system that was in place 20-30 years ago.

“We have increased this deposit considering the reality. We have also made another adjustment. Previously, an independent candidate needed signatures from two hundred and fifty voters. We have corrected this as it was constitutionally conflicting. A voter would already appear biased towards a candidate, and it would become known that he supports that candidate. This compromises the voter's confidentiality, so we have removed this requirement. Gradually, we will remove all such regulations in elections."

She further added: "We would be happy to conduct all elections with EVMs. We do not have the capacity to use EVMs everywhere. We wanted to conduct elections with the good, functioning EVMs we have. Elections in the Sirajganj and Pabna districts of Rajshahi division will be conducted using EVM machines. All stages of elections in these districts will be through EVMs. And, the rest of the division's districts will conduct all stages of elections using ballot papers."

"Our only message is to hold the local government election in a free, fair and festive mood," she said.

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