The Bangladesh Nationalist Party on Tuesday sent a letter to the election commission (EC) urging it to refrain from using electronic voting machines (EVMs) in the upcoming elections to Dhaka north and south city corporations.

A party delegation, led by its standing committee member Amir Khosru Mahmud Chowdhury, went to the EC with a letter of BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, reports news agency UNB.

The BNP delegation also held a meeting with Chief Election Commissioner KM Nurul Huda and other commissioners.

In the letter, Fakhrul said the EC still has the scope for proving its neutrality in the Dhaka city polls to be held on 1 February. “Take steps for conducting the voting through the traditional ballot cancelling the EVM system taking the futility of the technology into consideration.”

He hoped the election commission, as a constitutional institution, will take steps for holding the Dhaka city polls in a fair and transparent manner, and demonstrate its neutrality and independence by accepting their demand for not using the EVMs.

The other BNP delegation members include its standing committee member Iqbal Hasan Mahmud Tuku, joint secretary general Syed Moazzem Hossain Alal and Chattogram-8 constituency candidate Abu Sufian.

At the meeting, the BNP leaders also demanded reelection to Chattogram-8 seat through ballot peppers instead of EVMs.

Talking to newsmen after the meeting, Amir Khosru said the by-polls to Chattogram-8 was even worse than the 30 December, 2018 national elections as the ruling party ‘cadres’ captured all the polling stations and rigged votes through the EVMs.

He said the by-polls also exposed that vote rigging is possible through the EVMs.

Khosru said they urged the Commission to cancell the by-polls and take steps for fresh voting through ballot papers.