EC to challenge stay order on GCC polls

09 May 2018

The Election Commission has decided to challenge a High Court order that stalled Gazipur City Corporation polls.
The commission's decision comes two days after the court stayed the polls for three months following the hearing of a writ petition filed by local Awami League leader and Shimulia-1 Union Parishad Chairman ABM Azharul Islam Suroj on Sunday. Nine days prior to the elections, Suroj objected to the inclusion of six Mouzas or administrative districts of his union to the city corporation. "We have decided to appeal against the stay order and have appointed a lawyer. We'll proceed discussing with senior lawyers," Election Commission Secretary Helal Uddin Ahmed told reporters on Tuesday. He termed the stay order 'unfortunate' as EC had already taken clearance from the Local Government Division twice for holding the Gazipur ballot.
The stay order came as a blow for many as the election campaign in Gazipur had reached its peak with the mayoral candidates of the two major parties - the Awami League and the BNP - criticising each other and defending themselves. The BNP alleges the government had played a role in having the polls stalled- an allegation the ruling party denies. BNP candidate Hasan Uddin Sarker challenged the High Court's stay order at the Appellate Division on Monday last. Awami League candidate Jahangir Alam said he would also move to the top court against the High Court order.

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