LEGITIMACY CRISIS IN BANGLADESH: A CASE STUDY OF 10th GENERAL ELECTION

Md Jaynal Abedin

Abstract


Method of an election, the participation of voters and political parties to the election without barriers, conducting a free and fair election, credibility of election’s result, as well as legitimacy of the government, are one of the arguable issues in Bangladeshi politics. The 10th general election in Bangladesh was held on 05 January 2014 with the lack of all of the criteria of legitimacy. The ruling Bangladesh Awami League (BAL) government was accused to use all possible ways to prevent the opposition political parties from participating the election as a result Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) led opposition political parties boycotted the national election in the issue of caretaker government (CTG) and the BAL came in power again without any competition. The majority of parliament members (MPs) were elected without any contest, voters’ turnout was about 22.66%, a lot of polling centers were empty, a large number of opposition party leaders and candidates were arrested, and many people died in the clash. Local and International experts, observers, and donor agencies expressed their dissatisfaction with the credibility of the election although the ruling party claimed the election was free and fair. The BAL government had faced a legitimacy crisis both at home and abroad. From 2014 to 2018 Bangladesh had missed all norms of democracy practically but formally it was a “democratic regime”! The main question of the research is how the 2014 national election made the BAL govt. illegitimate? For this study the data was collected from both primary and secondary sources what includes books, articles, newspapers, periodicals, statements of the political parties; statements of the various election observers’ organizations as well as Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) both national and international. The current paper has designed with three parts. The introductory part decorated with the conceptual framework and literature review. The second part tried to give a clear picture of the 2014 national election. This part explained how the 2014 national election made the BAL govt. illegitimate and why it was a step of one-party rule. The third part concluded with some findings.

 

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Bangladesh, election, legitimacy, democracy

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References


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