Open contest in 12th JS polls saved democracy: PM

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Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today said the ruling Awami League had allowed its leaders to contest the last general elections beyond party nomination to save the democracy.

“Had it (polls) not been open to all party members, not only the elections would have been tainted, the democracy in the country would have been jeopardized,” she said in her introductory speech at an extended party meeting at the PM’s Ganabhaban official residence.

The premier reminded the meeting the party’s polls manifesto and need for its implementation to maintain the country’s as a developing nation.

Sheikh Hasina said the upcoming upazila elections would as well be open for all party members to contest but warned her party men not to engage in any confrontation saying any such disruptive behavior would be dealt with strict punitive measure.

She continued to say her party has again opened upazila elections, which is approaching, for all her party men.

The Premier said, “it will also be scrutinised how much work has been done for the common people in the last 15 years remaining in power, and who could not do that. Through it (scrutiny) we will judge who is more acceptable to the people.”
She issued warning against any sort of confrontation in the upcoming local government elections. She said, adding

“We don’t want any kind of confrontation. Stern actions will be taken against the persons, whoever he or she is responsible for their involvement.”

Mentioning that the 12th parliamentary election was free, fair and neutral,
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina who was re-elected as Bangladesh Premier for the
fourth consecutive term, said that those who want to raise question about the
election, must clearly mention their evidence in favour of it.

She said that elections have been held in many developed countries of the
world, but it has not yet been accepted by their opponents.

She added, “The election in Bangladesh was very fair. Public administration,
armed forces, law and order forces and all those involved in the election
have performed their duties impartially.”

Sheikh Hasina said that she saw that there was a big conspiracy regarding
the 12th general election to make sure that the voters do not come to polling
stations, the election could not be held in a fair manner, and it would be
easy to put the election under question.