Seventy-six new political parties have sought registration with the Election Commission after the deadline expired yesterday.
On 30 October last year, the commission, led by KM Nurul Huda, issued a public notification seeking applications within December 31 from political parties to get registered with it.
“A total of 76 political parties have applied. A committee will be formed to scrutinise those applications to see whether the parties have fulfilled the conditions properly,” said EC acting secretary Helaluddin Ahmed.
If required, the EC will ask intelligence agencies to provide information about the new parties, he said, adding that the final list of the parties would be published in March.
The commission will also examine whether the already registered political parties fulfilled the conditions, said Helaluddin.
As per the Representation of the People Order-1972, only registered political parties can contest in the parliamentary elections and local elections with their respective permanent election symbols designated by the Election Commission, while unregistered parties can contest the polls fielding independent candidates.
Currently, there are 40 registered political parties in the country.
Compared to 2013, a huge number of political parties have shown interest in getting registered with the EC this time.
In 2013, 43 new political parties applied to the EC, seeking registration and then the commission gave the registration to only two parties -- Bangladesh Sangskritik Muktijot and Bangladesh Nationalist Front.
Ahead of the ninth parliamentary elections in 2008, the then commission, led by ATM Shamsul Huda, for the first time took the initiative to bring the country's political parties under the EC's registration.
As many as 117 political parties applied for the registration following a public notification issued on 15 October that year in this regard. But only 39 parties were registered after submission of their draft organisational charters to meet the condition of getting registered.
Later, the commission cancelled the registration of Freedom Party, and the registration of Jamaat-e-Islami was cancelled as the High Court in its order declared the party's registration illegal in August 2013.