DHAKA, 16 JUNE: Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP)-backed mayoral candidates today scored a resounding victory in elections to the four city corporations, defeating their ruling Awami League-supported rivals, in a high-voltage, peaceful battle of ballots, ahead of the general elections. Candidates belonging to the BNP of former prime minister Khaleda Zia defeated rivals from Premier Sheikh Hasina’s Awami League with a big margin at all the four cities of northwestern Rajshahi, southwestern Khulna and Barisal and northeastern Sylhet. The independent Election Commission officially declared the BNP candidates winners after the day-long voting when the paramilitary Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) troops joined with police to enforce a strict security vigil amid fears of violence. In Rajshahi City Corporation, BNP’s Mosaddek Hossain Bulbul won by 47,332 votes against his AL rival AHM Khairuzzaman Liton, who was elected mayor in 2008. The election to Khulna City Corporation saw BNP’s Moniruzzaman Mony beating AL-backed Talukder Abdul Khaleque by 60,671 votes. In both Barisal and Sylhet, BNP-backed mayoral candidates defeated their rivals by 17,010 votes and 35,157 votes respectively. the daily star/ann & pti