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S M Mizanur Rahman
A wave of excitement has gripped the Awami League (AL) led Grand Alliance’s nomination aspirants as the day finally is set to arrive to declare names of candidates.
Besides, many of them are a bit of nervous whether they would be picked up by the high command of their respective parties.
Apart from the nomination seekers, leaders and workers of AL-led Grand Alliance and local people are also waiting eagerly to know who are going to be nominated.
However, according to AL sources, those who have been selected to the polls race have already been given green signal. On the other hand, those who were not selected have also been informed.
The AL aspirants who failed to get party ticket already met Prime Minister and AL President Sheikh Hasina, said the sources.
The sources added that Sheikh Hasina asked them to keep calm and also assured them of evaluating their organisational activities. She also asked them to work in favour of the party candidates.
The names of candidates of the Grand Alliance are likely to be announced tomorrow (Sunday) or Monday. The selected aspirants will be ensured of their candidature by issuing letters from their respective political parties and the alliance as well. Some changes also took place in selecting nomination at the last moment.
“I’m still waiting for the announcement of party candidates’ names. I wake up every morning hoping to see a nomination from my party,” an AL lawmaker told Bangladesh Post on Friday. AL President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina categorically said no one would be given nomination from AL-led Grand Alliance based on face value.
The nomination will be given to those who are popular and acceptable to the local people and have the capacity to win the competitive electoral race. When contacted AL lawmaker Shafiqul Islam Shimul from Natore-2 constituency, Jatiya Party lawmaker Shariful Islam Jinnah from Bogra-2, and Rashed Khan Menon, chairman of Workers Party of Bangladesh and lawmaker from Dhaka-8, echoing the same arguments, said the names of those who will be given nomination names will be announced from AL President’s Dhanmondi political office in the city.
Lawmaker Shafiqul Islam said he is very excited and a bit of nervous as he is waiting for party ticket.
“I expect to get party nomination to be announced any day,” the incumbent lawmaker said.
Jatiya Party lawmaker Shariful Islam Jinnah said their party Chairman HM Ershad has already submitted their list to the Grand Alliance leader Sheikh Hasina.
“As Jatiya Party submitted its candidates’ list to the Grand Alliance leader, the names of candidates will be declared from the AL President’s Dhanmondi political office. Yet, we have a plan to arrange a press conference to announce our party nominated candidates and electoral manifesto separately,” he said.
Rashed Khan Menon, also Social Welfare Minister, said they have also submitted their candidates list to Sheikh Hasina.
“We are going to announce the Workers Party’s electoral manifesto on November 29. As we are with AL-led 14-party Alliance, the names of the candidates will be declared from Dhanmondi. It is just a matter time to announce the names of the Grand Alliance candidates,” he said.
Meanwhile, Jatiya Party submitted a list of 70 seats before Sheikh Hasina. The ruling AL plans to sacrifice 40 to 45 seats, including four in capital Dhaka for the party.
Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh (BDB) President Dr AQM Badruddoza Chowdhury led Jukto Front sought 22 seats for contesting the polls. BDB-led Jukta Front has targeted to get at least 10 seats.
On the other hand, verbal discussion on seat sharing between AL and its alliance partners already took place. And the issue relating to seat sharing will be finalised by tomorrow (Sunday).
Earlier the Jatiya Party decided to contest the polls under the AL-led Grand Alliance. The party went to the elections under the alliance in 2008 as well. The party, however, used its ‘Plough’ symbol to draw votes.
AL alliance partners registered with the Election Commission (EC) Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD Inu), Workers Party of Bangladesh, Samyabadi Dal, the Ganatantri Party, the National Awami Party – NAP, and Tarikat Federation and the Jatiya Party (Manju-JP) held talks over seat sharing.
Besides, unregistered parties Gana Azadi League, Ganatantrik Majdur League, Communist Kendra, Bangladesh Samajtantrik Dal, Islami Front, Bikalpa Dhara Bangladesh led Jukta Front, and Bangladesh Krishak Sramik Party also had several meetings with the AL senior leaders in this regard.
However, all the political parties aspiring to contest the upcoming national election will have to announce the names of their candidates by November 27, as per the election schedule put forward by the Election Commission.