The Election Commission (EC) on Wednesday suspended all proceedings of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) election, which was scheduled to be held on February 26.
“We have taken the decision following an order of the High Court that suspended all the proceedings of the DNCC by-poll for three months,” Acting Secretary Helaluddin Ahmed of the EC Secretariat said while talking to reporters on Wednesday afternoon.
He, however, said the elections of 18 wards of the Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) will be held as per the schedule as the suspension order issued by the High Court will be applicable for DNCC only.
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Replying to a query about whether the commission will file an appeal against the verdict, he said: “The next course of action to this end will be taken with consultation of the lawyers after getting the copy of the order.”
According to sources, the commission will receive the copy of the order later in the day.
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“As many as 19 persons have so far collected for the mayor post, 412 for general councillor posts and 71 others for reserved seat for women,” he informed.
The people who collected nomination papers would not have to collect nomination papers in case of changing election schedule, he said.
Earlier Wednesday morning, a High Court division bench comprising of Justice Naima Haider and Justice Zafar Ahmed issued an order to halt the upcoming by-polls for the mayor post of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) for three months, after holding preliminary hearing of two writ petitions.
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The court also issued a rule asking the Election Commission to explain as to why the High Court shall not declare illegal the schedule for the mayoral by polls and elections in newly added 36 wards.
Earlier on Tuesday, Upazila Chairman of Bhatara Ataur Rahman filed a writ petition with the High Court seeking stay on the upcoming by-polls.
Five people, including secretaries of Local Government, Rural Development and Co-operatives (LGRD) Ministry, and Election Commission were made respondents to the writ petition.
LGRD minister: HC order won’t impact regular DNCC activities
Local Government, Rural Development and Cooperatives Minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain on Wednesday said the High Court order staying the Dhaka North City Corporation Polls will not pose any negative impact on the regular activity of DNCC, reports UNB.
While talking to the reporters at the secretariat, he said: "I want to assure the people that the stay order will not cause any standstill situation at the DNCC, we [the government] shall assist if any problem arises there."
He also said the panel mayor will carry out the regular activities as per the law.
Mosharraf also said he will sit with Election Commission (EC) to figure the next course of action.