Main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party’s mayoral candidates for the two Dhaka city corporations on Sunday urged the voters to cast vote for them to restore democracy.
The ruling Awami League mayoral candidates, on the other hand, sought votes for the continuation of the government’s development activities.
In the face of protests, the Election Commission on Saturday moved the polling date from January 30 to February 1 on account of Saraswati Puja.
The mayoral candidates of the two major political parties, along with hundreds of their party leaders and activists as well as party-backed ward councilor candidates, campaigned on Sunday highlighting their political lines and assuring specific development activities in their areas.
The AL candidates urged their party activists and supporters to conduct election campaign as per the electoral code of conduct and not to affect traffic movement during their campaigns.
The BNP candidates alleged that their activists were obstructed while hanging posters, adding that their posters were torn down at places by AL activists.
The AL mayoral candidates said that the election atmosphere was good and all were campaigning freely while the BNP candidates alleged that the Election Commission was not paying heed to their complaints and that there was a conspiracy being hatched against the BNP.
All the major candidates welcomed the Election Commission’s Saturday announcement deferring the election date.
BNP candidates, however, said that the election date deferral signified the incompetency of the Election Commission as they did not consider it before announcement the election schedule on December 22, 2019.
Communist Party of Bangladesh’s mayoral candidate for the Dhaka north city Sajedul Huq Rubel, during his campaigns in Kafrul, Senpara and Ibrahimpur of Mirpur on Sunday, promised to improve city corporation services for its dwellers, if elected.
BNP candidate for the Dhaka south city Ishraque Hossain, while beginning his campaign on Sunday at Azimpur Bus Stand, said that the people wanted change and, that is why, they were eagerly waiting for casting their votes for the sheaf of paddy, BNP’s election symbol.
He sought votes for the restoration of democracy, release of BNP’s imprisoned chairperson Khaleda Zia and to save Dhaka from destruction.
‘Conspiracies are going on to influence the January 1 Dhaka city elections,’ he said and urged the city dwellers to go to the polling centers without fear to give a befitting reply to the government’s misrule.
He said, if elected, he would make Dhaka safe and livable and present a corruption-free city corporation.
He campaigned at different places of Lalbagh, including the Chhapra Mosque, Azimpur Graveyard and Jagannath Saha Road areas.
AL mayoral candidate for the Dhaka south city Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh, during his electioneering, instructed his party activists to follow the electoral code of conduct during the campaign and not to create any traffic jam on city roads.
He started his campaign at a short rally in front of Notre Dame College at Arambagh and expressed his sympathy for the Secondary School Certificate candidates for their sufferings for rescheduling of the polls.
Taposh hoped that on February 1 a free and fair mayoral election would be held and the voters would cast their votes for their electoral symbol boat to allow them to continue development activities.
He campaigned in the capital’s Motijheel, Gulishtan and Shantinagr areas on the day.
BNP mayoral candidate for the Dhaka north city Tabith Awal, while beginning the day’s campaign in Mirpur 13, urged all to work together for a change and against all conspiracies to protect and uphold democracy.
‘We want to see what steps the EC takes to hold the polls in a free and fair manner. If the election is free and fair, all our mayoral and councillor candidates will certainly win,’ he said.
AL mayoral candidate for the Dhaka north city Atiqul Islam, while addressing a roadside rally in front of Khwaja Market in Kalyanpur, assured of installing CCTV cameras and 42,000 lights to make the city friendly for women.
If elected, he said, the CCTV cameras and lights would be controlled from city corporation’s command centre.
He said that they had already begun the work to set up the command centre for making Dhaka safe, clean and illuminated.
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