Vol. 4 Num 213 Wed. December 31, 2003  

DUTA polls today

Election to the 15-member executive committee of Dhaka University Teachers' Association (DUTA) will be held today.

The polling will be held from 10:00am to 2:00pm at the DUTA Club without any break, with Prof. Syed Fazley Elahi as election commissioner.

The major contenders are BNP-Jamaat-backed 'White panel' and pro-Awami League 'Blue panel'. The left-leaning 'Pink panel' is not contesting the polls separately, but three of its candidates are placed on the 'Blue panel'.

The candidates were busy with their last-minute campaign yesterday.

Teachers of the White panel vowed to work together to beat their rivals at a meeting at the residence of the Vice-Chancellor Prof. SMA Faiz on Monday night.

The Blue panel teachers were going door-to-door to woo the voters.

In its election manifesto, the Blue panel has pledged to uphold the spirit of the liberation war and the DU ordinance of 1973, restore discipline in appointment of teachers and check irregularities and harassment of teachers.

On the other hand, White panel has placed eight-point pledges including construction of a 50-flat teacher's tower and more dormitories for female students, renovation of all residential halls and buildings and academic buildings, setting up of computer lab in each faculty, and increasing the number of Ph.D. scholarships.

Prof. AAMS Arefin Siddique of Blue panel and Prof. Sirajul Islam Khan of White panel are vying for the post of president while Prof. Md Aktheruzzaman of Blue panel and Tahmina Akther Tofi of White panel are running for general secretary.

The candidates for the posts of vice-president, joint secretary and treasurer are Prof. SM Mahfuzur Rahman, Dr. Md Harunar Rashid Khan and Prof. Shafique Uz Jaman from the Blue panel and Prof. Mohammad Nurul Amin Bepari, Dr. ABM Obaidul Islam and Prof. M Farid Ahmed from the white panel.

The member candidates from the Blue panel are Prof. RIM Aminur Rashid, Prof. AZM Nowsher Ali Khan, Prof. Kazi Shahidullah, Prof. Fakhrul Alam, Prof. Nilufar Nahar, Prof. Mezba Uddin Ahmed, Prof. Md Aminul Haque Bhuiyan, Prof. Md Ashraf Uddin Chowdhury, Prof. Md Hossain Mansur and Prof. Sharifullah Bhuiyan.

And the White panel candidates are Prof. Abu Ahmed, Prof. Abdul Aziz, Prof. Chowdhury Mahmud Hasan, Prof. PK Md Motiur Rahman, Dr. Nayema Haque, Prof. Habiba Khatun, Prof. Md Abdur Rashid, Prof. Md Sirajul Islam, Prof. Sadrul Amin and Prof. Saiyad Shalehin Qadri.

Prof. AAMS Arefin Siddique, also a DUTA member, said that the teachers should choose their leaders carefully as they are very much conscious about their rights.

Prof. Abul Khaer, DUTA president and leader of the White panel, said, "We consider this year's election most important in perspective of national politics."