The deadline to submit nominations for the 12th parliamentary polls has closed and so has the window to extend the time for filing of nomination, the Election Commission says.
“The deadline to file poll nominations won’t be extended. It ended at 4pm. The Election Commission does not think it can be extended anymore,” said EC Secretary Jahangir Alam.
Asked whether the election would be held without the BNP, he said: “You can understand that.”
Amid street protests by the BNP and its allies, Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Habibul Awal declared the election schedule on Nov 15, setting Jan 7 for voting.
The BNP, Jamaat-e-Islami and like-minded parties have been observing hartals and transport blockades on days except for Tuesdays and weekends to demand the installation of a non-partisan caretaker government while protesting the announcement of the election schedule.
On Sunday, the BNP called for blockade for a 10th time from 6am Sunday to 6am Tuesday.
“You already know that the deadline to file nominations has elapsed at 4pm today. The candidates have submitted their nominations to returning officers and assistant officials,” the EC secretary said.
CEC Awal and the other election commissioners held a meeting at 3pm. The EC also met with the public administration secretary, Public Security Division secretary and IGP on Thursday.
On complying with the code of conduct, the EC secretary said: “The EC sat with the senior secretary of the home ministry. The IGP, in particular, briefed [the EC] on the overall situation. He said law and order was under control.”
The senior secretary at the Ministry of Public Administration received instructions and will proceed accordingly, he said.
The election investigation committee was looking into some candidates who breached the code of conduct in some places, said Jahangir.
According to the election schedule, the nominations will be screened from Dec 1-Dec 4 and the last date to withdraw is Dec 17.
More than 10 parties, including the BNP, boycotted the election. The Awami League and Jatiya Party are among around 30 parties taking part in the election