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Upazila parishad polls: 3 sent to jail for election fraud in Sirajganj

  • Published at 10:04 pm March 11th, 2019
Mahmudpur Government Primary School in Sirajganj sadar upazila, one of the polling centres in the first phase of upazila parishad elections. Polling was suspended in this centre after allegations of rigging and irregularities surfaced in the early hours of the polling day on Sunday, March 10, 2019 Dhaka Tribune

Voting was also suspended in their polling centre during the first phase of the elections on March 11

The presiding officer and two assistant presiding officers of a polling centre in Sirajganj sadar upazila, who had been arrested on charges of electoral fraud in the upazila parishad elections, were sent to jail on Monday.

Sub-Inspector (second) Saiful Islam of Sirajganj sadar police station confirmed the matter to the Dhaka Tribune.

The accused are: Presiding Officer Anwar Hossain, principal of Bahuli College; Assistant Presiding Officer Belal Hossain, headmaster of Ranigram Government Primary School in Sirajganj sadar upazila; and Abdul Alim, pharmacist at Sonagachha union medical centre in sadar upazila.

They were all appointed to conduct polling at Mahmudpur Government Primary School polling centre in Ward No 1 of Sirajganj sadar upazila.

Sirajganj sadar was one of the 78 upazilas where the first phase of upazila parishad elections took place on Sunday.

Also Read - Voting suspended at Sirajganj polling centre, 2 election officials held

In the early hours of the election day, upon hearing allegations of election rigging and irregularities, a team of police and Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) conducted a drive at Mahmudpur Government Primary School polling centre, Sirajganj district Election Officer Abul Hossain told the Dhaka Tribune on Sunday.

During the raid, Election Officer Abul Hossain and Executive Magistrate Rahmat Ullah caught the trio red-handed while stuffing ballot.

Following the arrest, Returning Officer Firoz Mahmud, also the additional deputy commissioner in Sirajganj, suspended voting in the polling centre at around 2am on Sunday – only hours before the polling was scheduled to start.

Assitant Returning Officer Sarker Mohammad Raihan, also upazila nirbahi officer in Sirajganj sadar, filed a case against the accused with Sadar police station under Section 79 (D) of Upazila Parishad Election Guidelines, 2013.