Ruling Awami League-backed mayoral candidates spent higher amounts of money than BNP-supported ones in the elections to Dhaka North and Dhaka South City Corporations that were held in April, according to their returns on election expenses submitted to the Election Commission.
In the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) elections, AL-backed Annisul Huq and BNP-blessed Tabith Awal spent Tk 49 lakh and Tk 43 lakh respectively, both under the ceiling of Tk 50 lakh allowed as polls expenditure.
Ruling Awami League-backed Annisul Huq, who was elected DNCC mayor, submitted his returns to the Election Commission on May 27, a day before the deadline expired on May 28.
Annisul Huq showed that he spent more than Tk 8 lakh for125 workers (five under each of 25 police stations) in the 13 days before the election held on April 28. He provided Tk 500 a day for each worker.
Huq also showed Tk 50,000 as his personal expenses during the elections.
Meanwhile, BNP-backed mayoral candidate Tabith Awal, who bagged the second highest number votes despite boycotting the polls, also placed his return on polls expenses within the deadline.
His expenses came to Tk 43,60,273 including some Tk 4 lakh he spent for his workers in the 15 days before the polls.
Tabith provided Tk 75 a day to each of 360 workers (10 workers each in the 36 wards).
The BNP-supported mayoral contender showed that his personal expenses were Tk 1.85 lakh during the polls.
DNCC returning officer Shah Alam said the candidates submitted their return on polls expenses within the stipulated time.
He said the information given in their returns are yet to be scrutinised. Their polls expenses will be uploaded on the EC'swebsite in time.
A total of 16 mayoral contestants and more than 400 councillor candidates ran the polls.
In Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) polls, AL-blessed mayoral contender Sayeed Khokon, who won the election, spent over Tk 28.35 lakh, while his nearest rival BNP-backed Mirza Abbas spent more than Tk 19.13 lakh under the ceiling of Tk 30 lakh polls expenditures.
However, independent candidate Zahidur Rahman who bagged 988 votes did not spend a single penny in the polls according to his returns submitted to the EC.
As many as 20 mayoral candidates contested the DSCC election.
According to the election laws, the ceiling of polls expenditure for mayoral candidates is Tk 50 lakh against constituencies with more than 20 lakh voters, while it is Tk 30 lakh against constituencies with 10-20 lakh voters.