( ACT NO. 155 Of 1972 )
[ 26th December, 1972 ]
WHEREAS it is necessary to provide for the conduct of elections to Parliament and for matters connected therewith and incidental thereto; 1♣
NOW, THEREFORE, in pursuance to the provisions of paragraph 3 of the Fourth Schedule to the Constitution of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh and in exercise of all powers enabling him in that behalf, the President is pleased to make and promulgate the following Order:
- (1) This Order may be called the Representation of the People Order, 1972.
(2) It extends to the whole of Bangladesh.
(3) It shall come into force at once.
- In this Order, unless there is anything repugnant in the subject or context,-
(i) “ballot paper account” means a ballot paper account prepared under clause (10) of Article 36;
2[ (ia) “ballot paper book” means a book containing ballot papers from which ballot papers are issued to electors; ]
(ii) “candidate” means a person proposed as a candidate for election as a member;
3[ (iia) “Code of Conduct” means the Code of Conduct formulated under Article 91B;]
4[ (iii) “Commission” means the Election Commission within the meaning of the Constitution;]
(iv) “Constituency” means a constituency delimited for the purpose of election of a member;
(v) “Constitution” means the Constitution of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh;
5[ (vi) “contesting candidate” means a candidate who has been validly nominated for election as a member and whose candidature has not been either withdrawn under clause (1) or ceased under clause (2) pf Article 16;]
(vii) “election” means election to a seat of a member held under this Order;
(viii) “election agent” means an election agent appointed by a candidate under Article 21 and, where no such appointment is made, the candidate acting as his own election agent;
6[ (viiia) “election expenses” means the election expenses as defined in Article 44A;
(viiib) “election observer” means a person permitted in writing by the Commission or by any person authorised by it in this behalf to observe any election under this Order, and includes a group of such observers;]
(ix) “election petition” means an election petition made under Article 49;
(x) “elector” in relation to a constituency, means a person who is enrolled on the electoral roll in that constituency;
7[ (xi) “electoral roll” means the final electoral roll prepared under 8[ ভোটার তালিকা আইন, ২০০৯ (২০০৯ সনের ৬নং আইন)];]
10[ (xia1) “Electronic Voting Machine” or “EVM” means an electronic voting machine approved by the Commission under Article 26B;]
11[ (xiaa) “law enforcing agency” means any Police Force, Armed Police Battalion, Rapid Action Battalion, Ansar Force, Battalion Ansar, 12[ Border Guard Bangladesh] and Coast Guard Force ;]
(xii) “member” means a member of Parliament;
(xiii) “nomination day” means the day appointed under Article 11 for the nomination of candidates;
(xiv) “Parliament” means Parliament for Bangladesh as defined in Article 152 of the Constitution;
13[ (xiva) “political party” means a political party as defined in article 152(1) of the Constitution; ]
(xv) “polling agent” means a polling agent appointed under Article 22; (xvi) “polling day” means the day on which poll is taken for an election;
(xvii) “polling officer” means a polling officer appointed under Article 9 for a polling station;
(xviii) “prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Order; (xix) “Presiding Officer” means a Presiding Officer appointed under Article 9 for a polling station and includes an Assistant Presiding Officer exercising the powers and performing the functions of Presiding Officer; 14[ (xixa) “registered political party” means a political party registered under Article 90A;]
(xx) “returned candidate” means a candidate who has been declared elected as a member under this Order;
(xxi) “Returning Officer” means a Returning Officer appointed under Article 7 and includes an Assistant Returning Officer exercising the powers and performing the functions of Returning Officer;
15[ (xxia) “rule” means any rule made under this Order;]
(xxii) “scruting day” means the day appointed under Article 11 for the scrutiny of nomination papers;
(xxiii) “spoilt ballot paper” means a ballot paper which has been spoiled and is returned to the Presiding Officer under Article 34;
16[ (xxiiia) “statutory public authority” means a statutory public authority as defined in article 152 (1) of the Constitution;]
17[ (xxiv) “ward” means a ward of a Union, Paurashava or City Corporation;]
(xxv) “withdrawal day” means the day appointed under Article 11 on or before which candidature may be withdrawn.
18[19[3. The Election Commission shall be constituted in accordance with Article 118 of the Constitution.]
3A. Subject to the provisions of this Order, the Commission shall regulate its own procedure.]
- The Commission may authorise 20[the Chief Election Commissioner or any of the Election Commissioners] or any of its officers to exercise and perform all or any of its powers and functions under this Order.
- (1) The Commission may require any person or authority to perform such function or render such assistance for the purposes of this Order as it may direct.
(2) All executive authorities of the Government shall assist the Commission in the performance of its functions, and for this purpose the President may, after consultation with the Commission, issue such directions as he may consider necessary.
- (1) The Government or an Officer authorised by it in this behalf, may upon a request made in this behalf by the Commission, by an order in writing, requisition any such vehicle or vessel as is needed or is likely to be needed for the purpose of transporting to and from any polling station ballot boxes or other election materials or any Officer or other person engaged for the performance of any duties in connection with the election:
Provided that no vehicle or vessel which is being used by a candidate or his election agent for any purpose connected with the election of such candidate shall be so requisitioned.
(2) Any person authorised in this behalf by the Government may take possession of any vehicle or vessel requisitioned under clause (1) and may for that purpose use such force including police force, as may be reasonably necessary.
(3) Where any vehicle or vessel is requisitioned under clause (1), there shall be paid to the owner thereof compensation the amount of which shall be determined by the Government or the officer requisitioning the vehicle or vessel on the basis of the fares and rates prevailing in the locality for its hire:
Provided that where the owner of the vehicle or vessel being aggrieved by the amount of compensation so determined, makes an application to the Government within period of thirty days from the date the amount has been determined for the matter being referred to an arbitrator the amount of compensation to be paid shall be such as the arbitrator appointed in this behalf by the Government may determine.
21[7. 22[* * *] (1) The Commission shall appoint a Returning Officer for each constituency for the purpose of election of a member for that constituency; and a person may be appointed as Returning Officer for two or more constituencies.
(2) The Commission may appoint as many Assistant Returning Officers as may be necessary:
Provided that no Assistant Returning Officer shall be appointed for more than one constituency.
(3) An Assistant Returning Officer shall assist the Returning Officer in the performance of his functions under this Order and may, subject to any condition imposed by the Commission, exercise and perform, under the control of the Returning Officer, the power and functions of the Returning Officer.
(4) It shall be the duty of a Returning Officer to do all such acts and things as may be necessary for effectively conducting an election in accordance with the provisions of this Order and the rules.
(5) Subject to the superintendance, direction, and control of the Commission, the Returning Officer shall supervise all work in the district in connection with the conduct of elections and shall also perform such other duties and functions as may be entrusted to him by the Commission.
(6) The Commission may, at any time, for reasons to be recorded in writing, withdraw any officer performing any duty in connection with an election, or any other public functionary, or any other law enforcing personnel who obstructs or prevents or attempts to obstruct or prevent the conduct of fair and impartial poll or interferes or attempts to interfere with an elector when he records his vote, or influences in any manner the polling staff or an elector or does any other act calculated to influence the result of election, and make such arrangements as it may consider necessary for the performance of the functions of the officer or person so withdrawn.
23[(7) Where the Commission withdraws any officer or person under clause (6), it-
(a) may, if such officer or person is working in any polling station or constituency, direct him to leave the polling station or the constituency at once;
(b) shall, in case of a direction under sub-clause (a), direct such officer or person to remain out of the constituency for the period specified in the direction, and accordingly he shall comply with the direction, and if he is required to perform any official duty only in that constituency, his appointing authority shall make arrangement for his leave or otherwise;
(c) shall refer the matter to the appropriate authority for taking disciplinary and other actions in relation to such officer or person.]
- 24[(1) The Commission shall maintain a list of polling stations for the purpose of election of a member for every constituency.]
(2) 25[The Commission may make such alterations in the list of polling stations as it may consider necessary and shall, at least twenty five days] before the polling day, publish in the official Gazette, the final list of polling stations specifying the area the electors whereof will be entitled to vote at each polling station.
(3) The Returning Officer shall provide each constituency with polling stations according to the final list published under clause (2).
(4) No polling station shall be located in any such premises as belong to, or are under the control of, any candidate.
26[(5) At any time after the finalization of candidature, if it is found that any polling station published in the Official Gazette under clause (2), belongs to, or is under the control of any candidate, the Commission may alter such polling station.]
- 27[(1) The returning Officer shall, by a notice in writing, require all heads of offices, institutions and establishments, whether Government or non-Government, in the district to provide him with a list of their officers and employees of such grades as he may specify for preparation of a panel of Presiding Officers, Assistant Presiding Officers and Polling Officers from among them.
(1A) After the preparation of the panel, the Returning Officer shall send a copy thereof to the heads of all the offices, institutions and establishments whose officers and employees have been included in the panel with a request to place the service of these officers and employees at the disposal of the Commission for use for election purpose and also forward a copy of the panel to the Commission.
(1B) The Returning Officer shall appoint from the panel for each polling station a Presiding Officer and such number of Assistant Presiding Officers and Polling Officers to assist the Presiding Officers as the Returning Officer may consider necessary:
Provided that a person who is, or has at any time been, in the employment of any candidate shall not be appointed as a Presiding Officer, Assistant Presiding Officer or Polling Officer.]
(2) A Presiding Officer shall conduct the poll in accordance with the provisions of this Order, and the rules, shall be responsible for maintaining order at the polling station and shall report to the Returning Officer any fact or incident which may, in his opinion, affect the fairness of the poll:
Provided that during the course of the poll the Presiding Officer may entrust such of his functions as may be specified by him to any Assistant Presiding Officer and it shall be the duty of the Assistant Presiding Officer to perform the functions so entrusted.
(3) The Returning Officer shall authorise one of the Assistant Presiding Officers to act in place of the Presiding Officer if the Presiding Officer is, at any time during the poll, by reason of illness or other cause, not present at the polling station, or is unable to perform his functions; and any absence of the Presiding Officer, and the reasons therefor, shall, as soon as possible after the close of the poll, be reported to the Returning Officer.
(4) The Returning Officer may, at any time during the poll for reasons to be recorded in writing, suspend any Presiding Officer, Assistant Presiding Officer, Polling Officer and make such arrangements as he may consider necessary for the performance of the functions of the officer so suspended.
- (1) The Commission shall provide the Returning Officer for each constituency with copies of electoral rolls for that constituency 28[immediately after the publication of notification under clause (1) of Article 11].
(2) The Returning Officer shall provide the Presiding Officer of each polling station with copies of electoral rolls containing the names of the electors entitled to vote at that polling station.
- (1) For the purpose of holding elections for constituting Parliament, the Commission shall, by notification in the official Gazette, call upon the electors to elect a member from each constituency and shall, in relation to each constituency, specify in the notification-
29[(a) a day on or before which the nomination of candidates may be filed;]
(b) a day 30[or days] for the scrutiny of nomination papers;
(c) a day on or before which candidature may be withdrawn; and
(d) a day 31[or days], at least fifteen days after the withdrawal day, for the taking of the poll.
(2) A Returning Officer shall, as soon as may be after the publication of a notification under clause (1), give public notice of the dates specified by the Commission in respect of the constituency or constituencies of which he is the Returning Officer; and the public notice shall be published at some prominent place or places within the constituency to which it relates.
(3) A public notice issued under clause (2) shall also invite nominations and specify the time before which and the place at which nomination papers shall be received by the Returning Officer 32[or the Assistant Returning Officer].
- 33[(1) Any elector of a constituency may propose or second for election to that constituency, the name of any person qualified to be a member under clause (1) of Article 66 of the Constitution:
Provided that a person shall be disqualified for election as or for being, a member, if he-
(a) is not listed in the electoral roll of any constituency;
(b) is not nominated by any registered political party or is not an independent candidate;
(c) is a person holding any office of profit in the service of the Republic or of a statutory public authority;
(d) is a person who is convicted of an offence punishable under Article 73, 74, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84 and 86 and sentenced to imprisonment for a term of not less than two years, unless a period of five years has elapsed since the date of his release;
(e) is a person whose election to a seat is declared void on any of the grounds mentioned in sub-clauses (c), (d) and (e) of clause (1) of Article 63, unless a period of five years has elapsed since the date of such declaration;
(f) has resigned or retired from the service of the Republic or of any statutory public authority or of the defence service, unless a period of three years has elapsed since the date of his resignation or retirement;
(g) has been dismissed or removed or compulsorily retired from the service of the Republic or of any statutory public authority on the ground of corruption, unless a period of five years has elapsed since the date of such dismissal, removal or compulsory retirement;
(h) has been appointed on contract to the service of the Republic or of any statutory public authority or of the defence service immediately after his retirement from such service, unless a period of three years has elapsed since the expiry or termination of such contract;
(i) is holding or has resigned or retired or has been discharged from an executive post of any non-government organization, which receives grant or fund from any foreign state or organization, unless a period of three years has elapsed since such resignation retirement, or discharge;
(k) whether by himself or by any person or body of persons in trust for him or for his benefit or on his account or as a member of a Hindu undivided family, has any share or interest in a contract, not been a contract between a co-operative society and Government, for the supply of goods to, or for the execution of any contract or the performance of any services undertaken by Government;
(l) being a loanee, other than a loanee who has taken small loan for agricultural purposes, has defaulted in repaying before seven days from the day of submission of nomination paper any loan or instalment thereof taken by him from a bank;
(m) is a director of a company or a partner of a firm 35[which] has defaulted in repaying before 36[***] the day of submission of nomination paper any loan or any instalment thereof taken by 37[the concerned company or firm] from a bank;
(n) personally has failed to pay the telephone, gas, electricity, water or any other bill of any service providing organization of the Government before seven days from the day of submission of nomination paper;
38[(o) has been convicted of any crime under the International Crimes (Tribunals) Act, 1973 ( Act No. XIX of 1973).]
Explanation I.- “office of profit” means holding any office, post or position in the full-time service of the Republic or any statutory public authority or company in which government has more than 50% (fifty percent) share.
Explanation II.- The disqualification under sub-clause (k) shall not apply to a person
(i) where the share or interest in the contract devolves on him by inheritance or succession or as a legatee, executor or administrator, until the expiration of six months after it has so devolved on him or such longer period as the president may, in any particular case allow; or
(ii) where the contract has been entered into by or on behalf of a public company as defined in the Companies Act, 1994 (Act No.XVIII of 1994), of which he is a share-holder but is neither a director holding an office of profit under the company nor a managing agent; or
(iii) where he is a member of Hindu undivided family and the contract has been entered into by any other member of that family in the course of carrying on a separate business in which he has no share or interest.
Explanation III.- “bank” means-
(a) any “bank company” as defined in Bank Company Act, 1991 (Act No.XIV of 1991);
39[(b) Bangladesh Development Bank Limited incorporated under the Companies Act, 1994 (Act No. 18 of 1994);]
(d) “Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation” established under Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation Order, 1973 (P.O.No.17 of 1973);
(e) “Bangladesh Krishi Bank” established under Bangladesh Krishi Bank Order, 1973 (P.O.No. 27 of 1973);
(f) “Investment Corporation of Bangladesh” established under Investment Corporation of Bangladesh Ordinance, 1976 (Ord. No.XI of 1976);
(g) “Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank” established under Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank Ordinance, 1986 (Ord. No.LVIII of 1986);
(h) “Basic Bank Limited” (Bangladesh Small Industries and Commerce Bank Limited) established under Companies Act, 1994 (Act No.XVIII of 1994).
Explanation IV.- “small loan for agricultural purposes” means all crops loan excepting tea and tobacco and includes short-term loan for development of fishery and marketing of agricultural produce and long-term loan for irrigation equipment, animal husbandry, development of fishery, agricultural equipment, nursery and horticulture, betel-leaf plantation, management of Jalmahal and for the purpose of producing silk worm, tuth tree, lakhkha tree, catechu tree, etc. the amount of which shall not exceed taka one lakh aggregating with interest and capital against every loan.
Explanation V.- A person or a company or a firm shall be deemed to have defaulted in repaying a loan or an instalment thereof referred to in sub-clauses (l) and (m) of Article 12(1) if he or it is a defaulter within the meaning of the expression ‘defaulter loanee’ as defined in Bank-Company Act, 1991(Act 14 of 1991) and for financial institution, as defined by Bangladesh Bank under Financial Institution Act, 1993 (Act No. 27 of 1993). The list of defaulter may be obtained from CIB of Bangladesh Bank or from the concerned bank or financial institution.
Explanation VI.- “financial institution” means a non-banking financial institution as defined in Financial Institution Act, 1993 (Act No. 27 of 1993).
Explanation VII.- ‘chief executive’ referred to in sub-clause (i) of Article 12(1) means a person holding full time post of a chief executive of any non-government organisation who receives monthly salary and other emoluments in that capacity.]
41[(1A) For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that, for the purposes of this Article, a person shall not be deemed to hold an office of profit in the service of the Republic or of a statutory public authority by reason only that he is an Administrator or a Deputy Administrator of a 42[city] Corporation or a 43[Word Commissioner].]
(2) Every proposal shall be made by a separate nomination paper in the prescribed form which shall be signed by the proposer and the seconder and shall contain-
(a) a declaration signed by the candidate that he has consented to the nomination and that he is not subject to any disqualification for being, or being elected as, a member; 44[***]
(b) a declaration signed by the proposer and the neither of them has subscribed to any other nomination paper either as proposer or seconder 45[; and]
46[(c) a declaration signed by the candidtate that he is not a candidate for more than three constituencies.]
47[(3) Every nomination paper shall either be-
(a) delivered by the candidate, or his proposer or seconder, to the Returning Officer or the Assistant Returning Officer who shall acknowledge the receipt of the nomination paper specifying the date and time of receipt;
(b) submitted through online by the candidate and receipt of such submission shall be acknowledged in such a manner as may be prescribed.”]
48[(3a) Every nomination paper under clause (2) shall be delivered along with the following documents, namely-
(a) in the case of an independent candidate, a list of signatures of one percent electors of the concerned constituency:
Provided that such list need not to be delivered if the independent candidate has previously been elected in any parliamentary election;
(b) a certificate signed by the chairman or secretary or a person holding the same rank on behalf of the registered political party stating that the candidate has been nominated by that party:
49[Provided that any registered political party may primarily nominate more than one candidate and if more than one candidate are nominated, their candidature are subject to the provision of clause (2) of Article 16.]
(3b) Every nomination paper under sub-clause (2) shall be delivered along with an affidavit signed by the candidate which shall include the following information and particulars, namely-
(a) an attested copy of the certificate of his highest educational qualification;
(b) whether at present he is accused of any criminal offence or not;
(c) whether he has any past criminal record, and, if any, the judgement of the case;
(d) description of his profession or business;
(e) probable sources of his income;
(f) a statement of property or debt of his own or his dependents;
(g) what promises he made before an election in which he was elected as a member in the past, and how many of those promises were fulfilled; and
(h) the amount of loan received by him alone, or jointly or by his dependents from any bank or financial institution, and the amount of loan received by him from any bank or financial institution as a Chairman, Managing Director or Director thereof.
Explanation.- “dependent” means the wife or husband of a candidate and includes son, daughter, father, mother, brother or sister of the candidate who are fully dependent upon him.]
(4) A person may be nominated in the same constituency by more than one nomination paper 50[, and a nomination paper may be delivered to both the Returning Officer and the Assistant Returning Officer.]
(5) If any person subscribes to more than one nomination paper, all such nomination papers, 51[except the one found valid under clause (3a) of Article 14], shall be void.
(6) The Returning Officer shall give a serial number to every nomination paper and endorse thereon the name of the person presenting it, and the date and time of its receipt, and inform such person of the time and place at which he shall hold scrutiny.
52[(6a) The Assistant Returning Officer shall give a serial number to every nomination paper and endorse thereon the name of the person presenting it, and the date and time of its receipt, and inform such person of the time and place at which the Returning Officer shall hold scrutiny, and immediately after the time for receiving nomination paper is over, forward all the nomination papers received by him to the Returning Officer.]
(7) The Returning Officer shall cause to be affixed at some conspicuous place in his office a notice of every nomination paper received by him 53[or received by the Assistant Returning Officer and forwarded to him under clause (6a)] containing particulars of the candidate and the names of the proposer and seconder as shown in the nomination paper.
- (1) Subject to the provisions of clause (2), no nomination paper delivered under Article 12 shall be accepted unless-
(a) 54[a sum of Taka twenty thousand is deposited in cash or by bank draft or pay order or treasury challan in favour of the Election Commission] by the candidate or by any person on his behalf at the time of its delivery; or
55[(b) it is accompanied by a receipt or a true copy thereof duly attested by a gazetted government servant showing that a sum as aforesaid has been deposited by the candidate or by any person on his behalf with the Returning Officer or the Assistant Returning Officer or at any Bank or at a Government Treasury or Sub-Treasury.]
(2) Not more than one deposit under clause (1) shall be required in the case of a person who has been nominated as a candidate by more than one nomination paper.
13A. (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Order, no person may at the same time be a candidate for more than 56[three] constituencies.