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Actions over harassment in birth certificate: EC

Staff Correspondent: The Election Commission (EC) has said that action will be taken against public representatives if they neglect or harass the people to give them birth certificates.
In a letter signed by EC Secretary Md. Humayun Kabir Khondkar – AKM Humayun Kabir, director general (DG) of the Department of National Identity Card and Vital Registration, has been directed to take necessary measures in this regard.
The letter states that if a public representative does not issue or harass the applicant’s birth registration certificate during the information collection update process, the information of the concerned public representative should be reported in writing to the NID DG. In this regard, a letter should be sent to the Local Government Division to take necessary action against the concerned public representative.
Besides, the letter also instructed all the regional officials to carry out an extensive campaign about this.
Recently, in the monthly coordination meeting of the EC, the regional election officials talked about the harassment of the public representatives regarding obtaining a birth certificate. As a result, this problem has become more evident in the ongoing voter list update. In this case, the officials are also expressing fear of not meeting the target of updating the voter list.
Some regional election officials said there is no problem in their areas, however, some regional election officers said that local representatives hesitate to give birth certificates, and many even did not allow.
As per the Electoral Roll Preparation Act, birth certificate no. has to be given in Form-II, say EC officials. In this case, a citizen’s birth registration certificate is required. Many suffer even after having education certificates, house rent receipts and other documents. In such a situation, the victims go to the concerned upazila or thana election office for becoming a voter without a birth certificate. However, due to a lack of opportunities, the EC field officials also branded them as “ineligibility”. As the law mentions birth certificates, they cannot make anyone a voter without them.
This time, the voter growth rate has been estimated to be 7.5 percent, i.e., 84,96,526 people, the EC has taken up the activities. Like last time, three years of information are being taken together. In this case, the data of those born on or before January 1, 2007, is being collected. Among them, when they reach the age of 18, they will automatically be added to the electoral roll.
The EC is moving forward with the target of completing the update work by November 20. The electoral roll has been updated five times since the updating of the voter list with photos in 2007-2008.
Currently, they have information of 11,32,87,010 people in their database. Among them, 5,76,89,529 are male voters and 5,55,97,027 are female voters. There are 454 third-gender voters.

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