The Election Commission (EC) in its last-minute call Saturday urged people to be included in the electoral roll, get deleted or to make any amendment, as the extended time for updating the voters' list through home visits ends today (Sunday).
EC Secretary Abdur Rashid Sarker said this while speaking at a press briefing at his Secretariat conference room in the city Saturday, reports UNB.
"Through you (media) I would like to inform people that there is only one day left. Those who are yet to be included, deleted or to make any amendment please contact the concerned officials", the EC secretary said.
If anyone was left out within the stipulated time, he or she could later be included, deleted or could make any amendment going to the concerned offices, he said.
Responding to a query, Sarker admitted that about 5.0 per cent of the task in the Dhaka city might not have been done by August 20, the last date of the extended timeframe set by the EC.
But he reminded, both double registration and providing false information are punishable offences.
"We have tried our best…We involved the officials of ministries of Education, and Primary and Mass Education alongside EC officials", he said.
There might be some pockets where updating may not take place, he added.
The EC secretary said that, as of August 17, a total of 15,94,705 voters were included in the city while 800,254 names deleted from the list in the updating process.
Replying to another query, he said that X-marked forms would be deleted from today, and after three to four days, a clear picture would emerge.
About the progress in the rest of the country, he said the task of compilation is about to finish in most places.
Asked about further extension of time, Sarker said, "The task will have to end…Time is short. The EC would sit today to decide."
In reply to a question, he said that the updated voters' list would be kept open for public for at least three to four days for the people to raise any objection.
Asked how the authenticity of the collection of forms could be checked, he said the updated list would be kept for public perusal to ascertain the authenticity.
Asked whether it is EC's failure not to have been able to complete the updating even in 30 days, the secretary said, "I do not think so. It might be the failure of the concerned officials."
Asked if contractors for printing the voters' list have already been appointed, he said the EC has already written to the Cabinet Division seeking relaxation of the Public Procurement Rules to allow the commission to get the voters' list printed in the shortest possible time.
Responding to another query, he said the printing of the voters' list should end by October. This happens to be the terminal month when the incumbent government hands over power to a caretaker government to arrange the next polls.
Asked how hopeful he is about the election with this voters' list -- as there have been controversies surrounding the voters' listing -- Sarker said the voters' list has been done in light of the existing laws and rules.
"Owing to public perception the voters' list has been updated through home visit -- and personally I believe the task has been done fairly well. I do not think there is any scope for any controversy", he said.
In reply to a query, he acknowledged that the political parties extended enough cooperation in the updating of the voters' list.