An inter-religious group in Bangladesh called on the government to allow religious minorities to be represented in the electoral commission that will monitor next year’s polls.
The Council for Unity between Buddhist and Hindu Christians in Bangladesh said minority communities should be represented in the new poll body that is being formed.
Nimol Rozario, president of the organization, said religious and ethnic minorities make up at least 12 percent of the country’s population.
“For this, we ask the committee and Bangladesh President Abudl Hamid that these groups be represented in order to support their condition,” said Rozario.
He said that every elections minorities always face risks.
“If a party is defeated, its supporters often accuse the minorities of not having voted for it and they become victims of retaliation,” he was quoted as saying in a report on AsiaNews.
Rozario noted that the electoral commission established in 2017 set dates of past elections during the religious holidays of minorities who are forced to interrupt their celebrations.
On February 5, the government set up a six-member research committee, led by a Supreme Court judge, to suggest more than 300 names of political parties, organizations and individuals for consideration by the electoral commission.
The Search Committee on the formation of the next Election Commission published this week a list of 322 names proposed by different parties, organizations and individuals.
The list includes dozens of well-known faces, but it did not mention which names were proposed by whom.
The list includes 61 former secretaries, 18 retired army officials including two army chiefs, and 15 justices including two chief justices.
The names of police officials including two inspector general, university teachers, lawyers, human rights activists, and those who have served different crucial institutions were also included.