This constituency is a Jatiya Party stronghold
Kurigram 2 constituency – Kurigram sadar, Rajarhat, and Fulbari upazilas – is waiting to witness a tight race among Awami League, Jatiya Party, and BNP in the upcoming
11th national election—that is scheduled to be held at the end of December.
This constituency is known as a Jatiya Party stronghold. During the ninth national by-election Awami League won in the constituency, however, in the 10th national election Jatiya Party regained the seat.
Jatiya Party Presidium Member Tajul Islam Chowdhury won Kurigram 2 in the 2014 election—as an uncontested candidate of the Awami League-led Grand Alliance.
Tajul recently died, raising the hopes of every party’s nomination-hopefuls to represent their constituency.
Despite lacking strong organizing power, Jatiya Party wants to keep the constituency by taking advantage of the Grand Alliance.
Cashing in on the internal feuds between two components of the Grand Alliance, BNP is eager to regain the constituency, after more than three decades.
Awami League frontrunners
Awami League nomination-seekers are campaigning by highlighting numerous government development projects.
The nomination hopefuls are party’s district unit General Secretary and former MP Md Jafar Ali; district unit’s Joint General Secretaries Aman Uddin Manju and Abraham Lincoln; and Jubo League’s district unit Convener Ruhul Amin Dulal.
The nomination-seekers said that since Kurigram’s development lags behind that of the division, the Grand Alliance should award any of them a ticket to contest the election—for the sake of the district’s development.
If Jatiya Party is nominated, there is a high likelihood that the Grand Alliance will lose in the election.
* Jatiya Party has won the seat six times
* Awami League won the constituency in the ninth by-election
* BNP once won the constituency—in 1979
One of the nomination seekers, Abraham, said the party top brass should nominate an Awami League candidate to keep control of the district and continue the development projects of the government.
He said the party is stronger organizing power than Jatiya party and they are capable of contesting in the election.
“But we will comply with the party decision and work together,” Abraham said.
Jafar Ali also said if any of them gets nominated they will be able to win in the election.
He said Jatiya Party lawmakers have not contributed to the district’s development even after serving for several consecutive terms.
“The Awami League candidates should get nomination so that they can work for the wellbeing of the people,” Jafar said.
The veteran Awami League leader said they want the Grand Alliance to nominate Awami League men in all constituencies of the district—including Kurigram 2.
He said though there are several nomination-seekers in the party there is no feud among them.
Race for Jatiya Party’s nomination
Jatiya Party nomination-seekers include late MP Tajul Islam Chowdhury’s younger brother Chowdhury Shafikul Islam, businessman Panir Uddin Ahmed, and Maj (Retd) Abdus Salam.
Tajul was elected a Jatiya Party MP for this constituency six times.
Shafikul said they have strong organizational activities in the region.
“If nominated, I am confident of winning. If elected an MP I will continue the development projects undertaken by the Awami League-led Grand Alliance government,” he said.
Shafikul said he hopes the central Awami League will leave the constituency for the Jatiya Party in recognition of the contribution made by his late brother to the welfare of the district’s people.
Local BNP leaders expressed their hope of winning the election for the first time in the last three decades.
Those vying for the nomination are BNP’s district unit Vice-President Abu Bakar Siddique, and district unit’s Joint General Secretary Sohel Hosnain Kaikobad.
BNP Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi might also seek the nomination to contest in the election for this constituency.
BNP won in this constituency in 1979 for the first time. The party thinks its candidate will be able to win this time as they have strong organizational activities in the constituency.
“If the government ensures a congenial atmosphere the BNP candidate will win in the election from this constituency,” said Kaikobad.
He said he is confident that the party will nominate him and he has already launched his campaign.