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Hasina returns early today

The rank and file of Awami League are now in a festive mood as the party President Sheikh Hasina returns home after her four months 24 days overseas treatment today (Thursday).

AL has taken all-out preparation to arrange a first-ever mammoth gathering from Zia International Airport to Dhanmondi Sudha Sadan residence as part of according a grand reception to her on the day.

According to party sources, the AL President Sheikh, started her journey from London by a flight of Emirate Airlines on Wednesday and is expected to land at ZIA at about 8am today.

Meanwhile, aspirants of AL ticket have begun picking up nomination forms for the ensuing Parliamentary polls. Syed Ashraful Islam on Wednesday inaugurated the distributing party’s nomination forms at the Banbandhu Avenue’s AL Headquarter in the morning. Tazimul Islam Shamim, relation of Dr Wajed Mia, picked the very first nomination form by paying TK some 7500 on behalf of Sheikh Hasina for constituency -217 (Gopalganj -3) .

Nomination forms would be on hand till Friday. Final selection of the grassroots level for candidates will be completed by November 9 as per AL’s decision. On the other hand, as per election schedule, the last date for submission of nomination papers is November 13.

While visiting the AL office, this correspondent witnessed a huge gathering in and around of AL Central Office. Around 970 nomination seekers picked up forms yesterday Followers and supporters of respective candidates remained busy showing their presence.

Coping with the fast changing political circumstances, the party brought some changes of requirements filing the nomination forms. Each candidate must fill up forms where some information is mandatory. These requirements include: address in details, academic qualification, previous political records – students’ politics, role of the candidate in 1971, after 1975, during anti-BNP-Jamaat movement in 2001 and after the 1/11 political changeover.

Talking to the newsmen, Syed Ashraful said, “We hope AL would be able to select honest and fit candidates for the upcoming polls. At the preliminary stage, forms for 300 seats will be distributed and later such allocation will be finalized among the allies of the mega alliance.”

“Sheikh Hasina will launch electoral campaign on Thursday. Final decision for forging electoral alliance, seat-sharing among allies, final nomination and election campaign would be after Hasina’s return,” added the AL spokesman.

Meanwhile, AL on Wednesday demanded of the Election Commission (EC) to defer the upazilla polls schedule by reasonable time at least one month.

A seven member high-powered AL delegation led by acting General Secretary Syed Ashraful Islam held a meeting with the Election Commission.

After more than one and half hour long parley with the commission, talking to newsmen, Syed Ashraful Islam said, “We have requested the commission to set the timeframe for submitting nomination papers for UZ polls after the parliamentary poll.”

He said they also urged the commission to relax some criteria barring candidature of bill and loan defaulters.

“We have also requested the EC to introduce a code of conduct for both print and electronic media to ensure fair and impartial coverage of election news of all political parties. Besides, we have asked the commission to provide the list of local election observers to us so that we can asses their neutrality,” Ashraf added.

While his attention was drawn about lifting emergency before JS poll, the AL leader said, “It is the matter for the government to decide on and we have already talked to it in this regard. If necessary, we will sit with government again.”

November 5, 2008 - Posted by | Politics | ,

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