Bangladesh Jamaat-e Islami will not be able to contest the Barguna-2 by-elections with ‘Scale’ as its electoral symbol as the High Court’s verdict is still in effect.
No Jamaat candidate will be allotted any electoral symbol, Election Commissioner Kazi Rakibuddin Ahmad said Sunday while announcing the by-polls schedules for Barguna-2 constituency.
He, however, said Jamaat will be able to contest the polls as independent candidate.
Replying to a query whether the Jamaat will be able to contest the by-election, he said: “The High Court’s judgment is still in effect. We are yet to get the copy of the verdict… so far no stay order came on the verdict.”
He said the Hight Court verdict will remain in effect until it is stayed or Jamaat goes for appeal challenging the judgment.
Asked whether Jamaat will be able to run in parliamentary polls if the Commission gets copy of the HC verdict before announcement of the election schedules, the CEC said: “They can contest the polls. But they’ll have to run without their symbol (scale).”
On August 1, a High Court bench passed a judgment declaring the registration of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami “illegal and void” as its organizational charter contradicts with the Constitution.
Rakibuddin said the Election Commission will hold a parley with some foreign diplomats on Tuesday to discuss the EC’s projects which receive financial assistance from donor countries.
He said the Commission will again clarify its stance over the abolition of clause 91 (E) of the Representation of the People Order (RPO) which empowers the EC to cancel candidature in case of serious violation of electoral codes and laws during the parliamentary elections.
In the wake of strong criticism, the CEC on July 30 came up with a clarification over its move, saying the provision is not applicable to be exercised. “The provision is ‘not applicable’ and ‘meaningless’.”
Earlier, on July 28, an EC meeting decided to propose abolishing clause 91 (E) of the RPO, which was incorporated in 2008 ahead of the ninth parliamentary elections.
Over providing registration to Bangladesh Nationalist Front (BNF), the CEC said the party will not get any electoral symbol beyond what is already in the Election Commission list.
Responding to another query, he said the symbol whatever it is - sheaf of paddy or sheaf of wheat - already in use by a political party will not be allotted to another party.