Low voter turnout as Sylhet-3 by-polls in progress

The by-election to Sylhet-3 constituency began this morning.

The seat became vacant after Mahmud-Us-Samad Chowdhury, the former MP of the constituency, died from Covid-19.

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EVM voting started at 8am in 149 voting centres of South Surma, Fenchuganj and Balaganj upazilas of Sylhet, reports our local correspondent.

According to Election Commission sources, there are 3.52 lakh voters in the constituency.

Awami League candidate Habibur Rahman Habib, Jatiya Party candidate Atiqur Rahman Atik, Bangladesh Congress Party candidate Junaid Mohammad Mia and BNP rebel candidate Shafi Ahmad Chowdhury are contesting in the election.

However, voter presence in the centres was low, our correspondent reports after visiting the places.

“There should be a lot of voters around this time at the centre, I can’t understand why that is not the case,” said voter Sabuj Ahmed who arrived at the voting centre at Hazi Md Raza Chowdhury High School in South Surma upazila around 9am to cast his vote.

Polling centre of Purbabhag Model Govt Pry School in the same upazila was also almost vacant in the morning.

However, AL candidate Habibur Rahman Habib, while visiting Dargapur Govt Primary School voting centre, said that voter turnout was satisfactory in the by-election.

“Specially women voters’ turnout is very promising,” Habibur said.

“The by-polls is being held in a peaceful and fair manner, we have asked Jatiya Party agents at several centres and they said they are not facing any issues,” the candidate claimed.

“We have political harmony in Sylhet,” the candidate said.

From the way the election is going on, it is certain that AL will win, he added.

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