The upcoming Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) mayoral by-poll will be a race among millionaires.
As per affidavits of the candidates, Awami League's Md Atiqul Islam, Nationalist Democratic Movement's (NDM) Bobby Hajjaj and independent candidate Mohammad Abdur Rahim are all businessmen by profession, and millionaires.
On January 22, the Election Commission declared that by-polls to DNCC mayoral post will be held on February 28. Election to councillor posts in 36 new wards -- 18 under the DNCC and 18 under the Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) -- will also be held on the day.
Voters of the north city corporation will elect the successor to late Mayor Annisul Huq.
AL candidate Atiqul holds BComm degree, and is owner of 16 companies, according to his affidavit. The 58-year-old businessman's annual income from agriculture, house rent, business, fisheries and others is about Tk 1.7 crore. He earns Tk 51.4 lakh per annum from his business.
His wife Shaila Shagufta Islam, a doctor, earns about Tk 25 lakh annually. She also has 0.35kg gold.
Atiqul's movable assets include Tk 87,063 cash, US$1,576.13 in foreign currencies in bank, and over Tk 1.1 crore deposited in banks and financial institutions.
He also has over Tk 3.75 crore in bonds and shares of listed and non-listed companies.
Of his immovable assets, he has 1.074-acre agricultural land worth around Tk 4.14 crore and 35.17-decimal non-agricultural land worth Tk 26 lakh. His houses and apartments are worth Tk 2.57 crore. He has a fish farm on 1.16-acre land, which is worth Tk 1.2 lakh.
He also has a home loan of Tk 1.1 crore with IFIC Bank's Gulshan branch. However, Atiqul has no car registered in his name.
On the other hand, Bobby, who has an MBA degree, is a businessman and a teacher at North South University.
He has a car but no house to his name. He earns Tk 3,27,000 from teaching annually.
His movable assets include Tk 54 lakh cash, bank deposit of Tk 13 lakh and gold worth Tk 10,000. He has also lent about Tk 50 lakh. His wife has Tk 45,000 in cash and around 1.2kg gold, worth about Tk 40 lakh.
On the other hand, independent candidate Rahim could not attain the secondary school certificate degree. The 64-year old is chairman of North South Properties Limited.
There are eight cases against him pending before courts. He was discharged from three cases.
His annual earnings from business stand at over Tk 3.82 lakh.
His movable assets include Tk 303,300 in cash and bank deposit of Tk 65 lakh. Rahim owns bonds and shares of Tk 3.15 crore.
The businessman has a flat worth Tk 50 lakh.
The EC also declared nomination of two other candidates -- National People's Party's (NPP) Anisur Rahman and Progressive Democratic Party or PDP's Shahin Khan -- valid.
Shahin, a businessman, has mentioned himself as self-educated and has shown no annual income in his affidavit.
He has cash worth Tk 2.50 lakh, bank deposits of Tk 3 lakh, a car and gold weighing around 35 grammes.
NPP's Anisur is a graduate. He mentioned politics and social work as his profession. His annual income from business is Tk 2.4 lakh. His wife owns a flat and 233 grammes gold.
The EC rejected nomination of Jatiya Party candidate and rock musician Shafin Ahmed, on grounds loan default.
According to the polls schedule, the last date for filing nomination papers for both of the DNCC by-polls and election to the new wards was January 30.
The returning officers scrutinised the nomination papers on February 2. The last date for withdrawing candidacy is February 9.