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5 December, 2016 00:00 00 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 5 December, 2016 01:05:05 AM
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HC rule on legality of Zila Parishad polls

The High Court yesterday asked the Election Commission and government to explain why the schedule for holding the Zila Parishad election on December 28 should not be declared illegal. It also asked the government to explain why indirect Zila Parishad polls should not be declared unconstitutional. In response to a petition, the HC bench comprising Justice Quazi Reza-Ul Hoque and Justice Mohammad Ullah issued the rule.
Secretaries of the cabinet division, law ministry and local government, rural development and co-operatives ministry, and the chief election commissioner have been asked to reply to the rule within four weeks.
Supreme Court lawyer Advocate Eunus Ali Akond filed the writ petition on November 29 seeking a stay on holding elections to district councils (zila parishad) scheduled for December 28.
Eunus said in his petition that Article 11 of the constitution of the republic only permits holding direct elections in Bangladesh. Indirect elections would forfeit the people’s democratic right to vote in the district council elections, he said. Holding indirect elections would be a violation of the Article 59(1) of the constitution which requires, he said, manning each tier of the republic’s local government by elected persons.
After a hearing on the petition, the HC issued the rule but refused to give a stay order on the zila parishad elections scheduled to be held on December 28.
After issuing the rule, the HC yesterday said that it would hold hearing on a similar pending rule, issued in 2000 following a writ petition challenging constitutionality of Zila Parishad Act. In 2000, former Bangladesh Nationalist Party MP and SC lawyer Khairul Enam filed the first writ petition challenging the District Council Act immediately after it was enacted, paving way for holding indirect district council elections.
After hearing his writ petition, a bench of Justice Mainur Reza Chowdhury and Justice Md Muzammel Hossain issued a rule on July 19, 2000, asking the government to explain in three weeks why the newly enacted Zila Parishad Act should not be declared illegal.

 

 

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Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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