Poll violence leaves two dead, many injured in Moheshkhali, Kutubdia

At least two people have been killed as violence broke out between supporters of opposing candidates amid Union Parishad elections in Cox’s Bazar’s Moheshkhali and Kutubdia Upazilas.

A man was killed by gunfire outside a polling centre in Moheshkhali Upazila’s Kutubjom Union around 9:30 am on Monday morning, said Md Rafiqul Islam, additional superintendent of Cox’s Bazar police.

“A man was killed in election violence there,” he said. “At least 35 others were injured in the exchange of gunfire.”

Supporters of Awami League candidate Sheikh Kamal clashed with those of opposition independent candidate Mosharaf Hossain Khokon outside a polling centre in the Nayapara area of Ward-5 around 9:30 am, he said.

During the clash, 45-year-old Abul Kalam was shot and taken to Moheshkhali Upazila Health Complex for treatment, where doctors declared him dead.

The body has been sent to Cox’s Bazar Sadar Hospital, the police official said.

At least ten others were shot and have been admitted to the local health complex or the Sadar Hospital for treatment.

Police, BGB and senior officials of the local government inspected the scene after the clash.

The Kutubjom Government Primary School polling centre and the Jamia Sunnah Darul Ulum Dakhil Madrasa polling centre have been closed due to the violence.

Meanwhile, another man was killed in election violence in Kutubdia’s Boroghop Union around 11:30 am, said Kutubdia Police chief Mohammad Omar Haidar.

“A clash occurred between supporters of the Awami League candidate and an independent candidate,” he said. “One man was killed and several others injured.”

The deceased was identified as 35-year-old Abdul Halim, an agent working for the Awami League candidate. He was shot and killed during the violence in front of the Pilotkata Government Primary School polling centre.

Union Parishad polls are being held at 160 unions across the country on Monday.

Voting is underway at 14 unions in five upazilas and in two municipalities (Moheshkhali and Chakaria) in Cox’s Bazar.

Voting has also been suspended at a polling centre in Satkhira’s Kergachi Union over allegations of irregularities, said Md Atiar Rahman, deputy secretary of the Election Commission.