The ruling Awami League’s candidate for Rangpur-3 Rezaul Karim Razu has withdrawn his candidature from the by-polls to the constituency, which fell vacant after the death of Jatiya Party founder HM Ershad.
Flanked by the party leaders and activists, Razu, the general secretary of the party’s Rangpur district unit, filed his application to pull out of the race at to the Returning Officer GM Shahtab Uddin on Monday (Sept 16).
Speaking to media after withdrawing his nomination, Razu said he quitted the by-polls in line party chief and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s instruction.
“Prime Minister told me to withdraw my candidature when I met her,” Razu said.
Now, as many as six candidates are contesting the by-polls. They are Jatiya Party nominated Mohajoyte candidate Rahgir Al Mahi Saad Ershad, BNP-nominated candidate Rita Rahman, independent candidate Hossain Mokbul Shahriar Asif, National People Party leader Shafiul Alam, Muhammad Shahidullah of Gano Front and Tauhidur Rahman Mandal Raju of Khelafat Majlish.
On Sept 1, the Election Commission announced the schedule for the Rangpur by-polls. The voting will be held on Oct 5 using the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) across the constituency.
As per the schedule, the deadline for submission of nomination papers was September 9, while the date for scrutinizing those was Sept 11, and the last date for withdrawal of candidature is September 16.
A total of 442,072 people are scheduled to exercise their franchise in the election. Of them, 221,310 are men, and 220, 762 women.
The Rangpur 3 constituency fell vacant after the death of Leader of the Opposition and Jatiya Party Chairman Hussain Muhammad Ershad on Jul 14.
The Election Commission has a constitutional obligation to complete the by-polls within 90 days after it fell vacant.