Bangladesh replaces 338 chiefs of police stations in one go before general election

The Election Commission had approved the replacement 47 UNOs

Senior Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 7 Dec 2023, 06:00 PM
Updated : 7 Dec 2023, 06:00 PM

Police Headquarters has replaced the OCs, or chiefs of police stations, at 338 police stations throughout the country ahead of the 12th parliamentary elections with the approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Election Commission.

A notice to the effect was issued on Thursday night.

“In most cases, these OCs were transferred outside their current constituencies. In some cases they have been transferred to other parts of the district and some outside their district,” EC Secretary Md Jahangir Alam told the media at a briefing in the afternoon.

On Nov 30, the EC directed the Ministry of Public Administration and the Ministry of Home Affairs to transfer the Upazila executive officers (UNOs) and the chiefs of police stations to ensure the smooth completion of the upcoming parliamentary polls.

The home ministry was asked to send a list of the replaced personnel to the EC.

The Department of Public Safety then sent a list of OCs who had been assigned to the same workplace for more than six months to the commission.

The Ministry of Public Administration also proposed the replacement of over a hundred UNOs who had been in charge for over a year.

The EC then approved the replacement of 47 UNOs based on the ministry’s proposal.

On Wednesday, a proposal was put forward to replace 110 UNOs and 338 OCs. The EC approved it on Thursday.

“The UNOs are being transferred based on the location of their constituencies. Any serious complaint against any official will be investigated and action taken accordingly,” EC Secretary Jahangir said.

338 APPLICANTS HAVE APPEALED

So far, 338 applicants have appealed against the EC’s decision to drop them from the parliamentary races in the general election.

Applicants have until Saturday to object to their removal.

The EC will then sit for hearings on these appeals and reach their final decision.

A total of 2,716 applications were submitted for the 300 parliamentary seats, according to the EC secretary.

During the screening process, 731 of these applications were scrapped due to irregularities.

The appeal process was opened on Dec 5 and 42 appeals were submitted on the first day, 141 on Dec 6, and 155 on Dec 7.

“The appeals will be heard one after the other from Dec 10. Candidates have until Dec 17 to withdraw. Symbols will be assigned on Dec 18. Candidates can begin their campaigns afterwards.”

Campaigning can continue until 8 am on Jan 5. Sunday, Jan 7, 2024 will be election day.

179 FOREIGN ELECTION OBSERVERS SHOW INTEREST

The EC says it has received 179 applications from abroad to observe the ballot. The deadline for the applications was on Thursday.

So far, 131 have been registered as foreign observers and 48 for foreign journalists.

“The number may go up,” Jahangir said. “The final count will be clear on Dec 8 after the mailed applications are processed.”