Amir of Islami Andolon Mufti Syed Rezaul Karim speaking at a rally. -File Photo AA
The Islami Andolon Bangladesh is going ahead in the 'vote politics' silently. This religion-based party is gradually doing well in the local government elections adopting 'walk alone' policy not being a part of any alliance. The number of votes of the party has increased also in the national polls.
After the establishment of the party on March 13, 1987, its progress in last three years in the politics of vote is surprising.
Where Ershad's Jatiya Party, the opposition party in Parliament, has got only around 1500 votes in the just-concluded Khulna City Corporation (KCC) polls, Islami Andolon has bagged 14,363 votes.
The party has emerged third in terms of votes it bagged in polls of Dhaka north and Dhaka south, Narayanganj, Rangpur and Khulna city elections.
But the political analysts evaluate that as Islami Andolon is a pir (religious guide) based party, it has a significant number of followers. 'Charmonai School' is more acceptable as the pir of Deoband and Qawmi genre.
As it is a pir-based party, its popularity is increasing day by day to the working people. But the difference of votes for winning election or becoming second-placed party remains huge. This is why, political analysts don't see the party on having a chance to assume power in the near future.
Analyzing the results of Dhaka South City Corporation, Dhaka North City Corporation, Narayanganj City Corporation, Rangpur City Corporation and Khulna City Corporation polls in last 2-3 years, it has been found that Islami Andolon candidate Mufti Masum Billah became third in Narayangaj City Corporation election.
He got 13,914 votes. In 2015, Islami Andolon became third in Dhaka two city polls. Young leader of the party Sheikh Fazle Bari Masud appeared third bagging 18,050 votes in the election of Dhaka North City Corporation while Abdur Rahman got 14,784 votes in Dhaka South City Corporation polls.
In the Khulna City Corporation election, Islami Andolon leader ATM Golam Mostafa got 23,718 votes where BNP candidate got over 34,000 votes. In Khulna Coty Corporation polls, Islami Andolon candidate got around 15 thousand votes.
According to the publicity wing of Islami Andolon, there are three union council chairmen in the country, who were elected with the symbol of this party. Islami Andolon Amir Mufti Syed Rezaul Karim was elected twice as the chairman of Charmonai in Barishal since 2003.
At present, his younger brother Mufti Ishaque Mohammad Abul Khair is the chairman of this union. Islami Andolon nominated candidate Alauddin Alal won as the chairman of Kamlabari union in Aditmari upazila of Lalmonirhat in 2016. He defeated Aditmari upazila Awami League leader and former chairman of that union known as a stronghold of the Awami League.
Besides, the present chairman of Charkadira union under Kamalnagar upazila of Lakshmipur district won with Islami Andolon ticket.
Islami Andolon Amir Moulana Syed Rezaul Karim told journalist, "The local government elections weren't fair. If the elections were free and fair, people would see the popularity of Islami Andolon."
He further said, "People of the country want freedom from the clutches of the ruling party. They don't find the alternative force. They want a society free from terrorism and corruption. They want a peaceful society. They are getting attracted to Islamic parties as there is no competitive platform in the country."
Shushashoner Jonno Nagorik (Shujan) Secretary Badiul Alam Majumder said, "The votes of Islami Andolon have significantly increased in the Rangpur City Corporation polls. The reason may be the inclination to the religion
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