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653 judicial magistrates deployed to hold trial of polls offences

Published : 05 Jan 2024 11:01 PM | Updated : 06 Jan 2024 12:34 PM

A total of 653 judicial magistrates were deployed across the country on Friday, just two days ahead of the 12th parliamentary elections slated for tomorrow (January 7).

The judicial magistrates have been appointed to take the election-related offences of the cognizance and hold their summary trial during the national elections. They are assigned to perform the duties of the short trial of various crimes.

Officials of the Election Commission (EC)’s legal wing said that the judicial magistrates were deployed for five days before and after the voting day.

Joint secretary of the EC’s legal wing Mahbubar Rahman Sarker said that the 653 judicial magistrates will discharge duties in 300 constituencies across the country from January 5 to January 9 meaning two days before the polls, on the voting day, and two days after the polls.

If a magistrate takes cognizance of any electoral offence during discharging duties, its report will be sent to the deputy secretary (law) of the EC Secretariat.

Earlier in November, the EC wrote to the law ministry to take necessary steps regarding the appointment of the judicial magistrates with the advice of the Supreme Court. 

According to the RPO, taking into account the crime of stealing ballot papers, destroying ballot papers, robbing ballot boxes, obstructing or forcing voting, making the environment of the polling station unsuitable for voting, they can try all these crimes summarily. 

Meanwhile, alongside the deployment of 653 judicial magistrates, the mobile courts are also active in each constituency across the country. 

A total of 802 executive magistrates have been working in the field from November 28 to check the violation of the code of conduct and other crimes, and maintain the law and order during the forthcoming general elections slated for January 7.

Many candidates and their supporters have faced action by the mobile courts for violating electoral code of conduct during their mass campaign. 

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