Sunday, January 17th, 2021

Gaibandha municipal polls: Locals seize ballot boxes, clashes break out

Published 12:19 am | January 17, 2021

dainik somoy sangbad

Online desk : Eight people, including a policeman, were injured on Saturday as the law enforcers and locals got into a violent clash in Gaibandha municipality over vote counting.

The clash broke out as the locals seized the ballot boxes of Purbo Komornai polling station of the municipality’ Ward 9.
The election officials had tried to move the voting equipment and ballot boxes to the district Election Commission office before counting the votes, the locals said.

However, Mohammad Mahfuzur Rahman, officer-in-charge of Gaibandha Sadar Police Station, said the locals attacked the polling officials and police as they were taking the voting equipment and ballot papers to the district Election Commission office after counting the votes.

“As the situation started to get worse, police fired tear gas in self-defence. Then the protesters vandalised and torched four vehicles of police and Rapid Action Battalion,” Mahfuzur said.

“However, the police could bring the situation under control after 8pm. Additional forces have been deployed in the area to fend off further unwanted incidents.”

Voting in the second phase elections of 60 municipalities concluded on Saturday amid a few incidents of violence and irregularities.

Balloting started around 8am and continued until 4pm without any break.

Two major political parties – Awami League and BNP – had candidates in most of the polling areas.

Electronic voting machines (EVMs) were used in 29 municipalities and traditional ballot papers in the rest.

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