Ballots to be sent to most centres on polling day morning

Election commission building

Ballot papers for the 12th National Parliament Elections will be dispatched to the majority of polling stations on the morning of the polling day.  

The Returning Officer will collaborate with local police to determine the delivery of ballot papers to remote areas and polling centres where it may not be possible to reach the morning of polling day.  

The Election Commission issued a circular on Monday, providing instructions in this regard.

As per the circular, the EC has resolved to ensure the delivery of ballot papers to the majority of polling stations before the commencement of polling on the morning of the election.  

However, for polling stations situated in hilly areas, Haor, Char or island areas, or similar remote locations, or polling stations in remote areas where it is not feasible for the ballot papers to reach on the morning of the polling day (taking into account communication infrastructure and travel time from the district headquarters or upazila headquarters or metropolitan area), the Upazila Nirbahi Officer and Assistant Returning Officer will, in consultation with local police authorities, determine the appropriate time for those polling stations. 

The Returning Officer is required to strategise and gain the approval of the Election Commission by 31 December by conducting verification and data collection to ensure the secure delivery of the ballot papers to the polling station on the morning of the polling day.

Additionally, the circular emphasises the importance of implementing sufficient security measures throughout the transportation and distribution process of election materials, including ballot papers and boxes.

This involves the movement from the election commission secretariat to the district level, from the district level to the upazila level, and from the upazila level to the polling stations. The necessary actions will be carried out in consultation and coordination with relevant law enforcement authorities, including the Superintendent of Police.

In line with the requirements, a special security plan must be devised and implemented at the divisional, regional, or district level for the transportation of electoral materials. Similarly, a security plan is mandated for the transportation and distribution of electoral materials from the divisional or regional level to the district level and from the district level to the upazila level.

It's worth noting that the 12th National Parliament elections are slated for 7 January.