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Dhaka Tribune

Jamaat to contest election under BNP’s symbol in 25 constituencies

BNP has already granted nominations to 25 Jamaat leaders

Update : 28 Nov 2018, 10:58 PM

Jamaat-e-Islami has decided to contest the 11th general election as part of the 20-party alliance, under the BNP’s electoral symbol.  

Jamaat will use BNP’s symbol, a sheaf of paddy, as it contests the election in 25 constituencies, and BNP has already granted nominations to 25 Jamaat leaders to this end. 

Representatives of Jamaat disclosed the decision after the party’s leader Shafiqur Rahman submitted his nomination form for the Dhaka 15 constituency on Wednesday.

Earlier, the nomination letters, signed by BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, had been handed over to Jamaat. 

"We have received 25 nomination letters from the BNP. We are participating in the election as a member of the 20-party alliance," Matiur Rahman Akand, organizing secretary of Jamaat-e-Islami, said in a press briefing at the divisional commissioner’s office in Shegunbagicha.  

However, the Jamaat organizing secretary did not deny claims that the party would also field independent candidates.

“It [the fielding of independent candidates] will depend on discussions at meetings of the 20-party alliance,” he said.

Jamaat leaders cannot contest the polls under the party’s own electoral symbol, as its registration with the Election Commission was canceled by a High Court order.

Inside sources at Jamaat said the party was initially preparing to contest the general election with independent candidates, but later decided to do so under the BNP’s electoral symbol. 

According to the electoral law, Jamaat leaders who are contesting the polls with BNP tickets under the BNP’s symbol will be considered BNP candidates.

When asked about the cancellation of Jamaat’s registration with the Election Commission, Matiur said: “When a case is with the Appellate Division, it means the case is still continuing. As a result, the way the EC cancelled the party’s registration is illegal. 

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