Eminent citizens of the country on Tuesday said according to previous experience it can be said that fair election is not possible under a partisan government.
They made this comment during the second round talks held with newly formed Election Commission at its office in Dhaka’s Agargaon area on Tuesday.
Although 39 eminent citizens were invited to the dialogue but 19 took part.
Eminent citizens have placed few recommendations during the dialogue which includes not to use EVMs in parliamentary elections without the consent of all, ensuring favorable environment so that voters can exercise their franchise without any obstacles, ensuring safety of women and minority voters before and after the polls, and bringing the law enforcers and polls-time administration under EC.
Some of the eminent citizens said previous experience has shown that fair election is not possible under a partisan government. To what extent the EC will be able to exercise the powers vested with them by the constitution and the law will largely depend on the polls time government. There must be a polls time government that has no interest in the outcome of the vote.
Gonoshasthaya Kendra founder Zafrullah Chowdhury, Centre for Policy Dialogue’s (CPD) fellow Debapriya Bhattacharya, Transparency International Bangladesh’s executive director Iftekharuzzaman, former cabinet secretary Ali Imam Majumder, former governor of Bangladesh Bank Mohammed Farashuddin and University Grants Commission’s (UGC) former chairman Nazrul Islam were present at that time.
At the end of the dialogue, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Kazi Habibul Awal said that they have listened to the suggestions made by the eminent citizens.
Necessary steps will be taken after assessing the recommendations of the eminent citizens, added the CEC.