EC has to think about three things about upazila elections

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Total Upazila Parishad 495.

Now 452 are eligible for election.

Comilla mayoral election to be held by March 12.

Election Commission (EC) has started preparations for the Sixth Upazila Parishad elections after the National Assembly elections. However, in fixing the date of the election, we have to think about these three things – the secondary examination, the holy month of Ramadan and the rainy season.

According to EC sources, EC wants to conduct upazila elections in several stages from next March. Apart from this, the mayor post of Comilla City Corporation also has to be elected. This election may be held in the second week of March before fasting. A decision on these issues may be made this week.

Due to Madhyamik exams, Ramzan and Monsoon, the polling date has to be thought about

This year some other local government organizations have to be elected along with the Upazila Parishad elections. There are 495 Upazila Parishads across the country. Generally, elections are not held simultaneously in all upazilas. This selection is done in multiple steps. This time also EC is thinking of conducting this election step by step.

Before this, the fifth upazila parishad election was held in 2019. The election of 455 upazila parishads was held in five phases starting from March of that year and ended in June. Of these, four phases of voting were held in March. In the upazila election, voting for the post of chairman is done in the party symbol. BNP is unlikely to participate in this election. The ruling Awami League is also thinking of not giving party candidates this time. If this is the case, this election will be mainly between independent candidates.

According to EC sources, as per the law, the upazila council has to hold elections within 180 days before the term of office is completed. Now 452 Upazila Parishads are eligible for election. Elections should be held in these upazilas by June. Apart from this, almost all upazila elections will be useful except for a few by next March.

There is a discussion in the EC about whether it is right to make this selection in the SSC examination or not. Comilla City Corporation and some local government by-elections may be held during the SSC examination.

But secondary (SSC) and equivalent examinations are starting across the country on February 15. The exam will end on March 12. The holy month of Ramadan can start from March 11. Generally public exams like SSC and selections are not conducted in the month of Ramzan. On the other hand, the rainy season will start from May-June. All in all, the favorable time for Upazila Parishad elections will be from the end of April to the month of May.

According to the concerned sources, the EC is thinking of voting for the post of Mayor of Comilla City Corporation in the second week of March. The EC Secretariat is preparing for the first phase of Upazila Parishad also before fasting. However, there is a discussion in the EC whether it is right to make this selection during the SSC examination. Comilla City Corporation and some local government by-elections may be held during the SSC examination.

In June 2022, Arfanul Haque was elected mayor in Comilla City Corporation elections. On December 13, the post of mayor became vacant due to his death. As per the law, the post has to be elected within 90 days of the vacancy.

EC Additional Secretary Ashok Kumar Debnath told Prothom Alo that a letter has been received from the Ministry of Local Government for holding the Upazila Parishad and Comilla City Corporation elections. The EC has not yet decided on the date of the election. He said that the first phase of upazila elections may be held before fasting. Because, after the monsoon comes, there may be problems in voting in some areas. The EC may take a decision on this within this week.

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