The sudden approval of a draft Election Commission law by the cabinet certainly gives the government and the ruling party a powerful public relation tool, as they can claim they have done what no other party even attempted in the last 50 years. Why wouldn’t they? It was, after all, portrayed by some eminent civil society voices as the most important necessity to restore trust in our election management system.
Quite a good number of political parties also demanded a legal instrument for the formation of the next Election Commission. However, it has to be noted here that most of these parties either have been or still are in partnership with the Awami League. And, regrettably, these parties have never raised any urgency for such a law before in their 13-year-long partnership in running the country. It seems that they have regained their conscience only after the outside world—the Biden administration, in particular—started exerting visible pressure for restoration of democracy in Bangladesh.