“Three Bangladeshi daughters” shine in UK polls again


DHAKA, June 9, 2017 (BSS) – Three Bangladeshi-origin female politicians dubbed as “tin kanya” or “three daughters” have shined again the UK general elections with their re-election in Thursday’s polls.

The three — Bangabandhu’s granddaughter Tulip Rizwana Siddiq, Rushanara Ali and Dr Rupa Huq — retained their seats with a resounding victory on Labour Party ticket.

Tulip, Sheikh Rehana’s daughter and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s niece, retained her Hampstead and Kilburn seat with a margin of 15,560 votes. She polled 34,464 against her Conservative rival’s Claire-Louise Leyland 18,904.

This year’s polls she widened the margin of votes to 15,560 from 1,138 in 2015.

“Humbled to be re-elected for my home seat of Hampstead and Kilburn! . . . Thank you all so much for your kind support,” Tulip tweeted after the huge victory.

Rushanara was also re-elected from Bethnal Green and Bow constituency by bagging 42,969 votes while her rival Conservative Party candidate Charlotte Chirico got 7,576.

“Thank you Bethnal Green & Bow from the bottom of my heart for re-electing me as your Member of Parliament. It is an honour and a privilege,” she wrote in her Twitter account.

Rupa retained the Ealing Central and Acton seat for Labour with 33,037 votes while her counterpart Conservative Party candidate Joy Morrissey got 19,230 votes.

Fourteen candidates of Bangladeshi origin contested the June 8 UK polls but Bangbandhu’s granddaughter Tulip, Rushanara and Rupa grabbed most public attention.

The number of Bangladeshi-origin candidates in 2015 UK polls was 11, of which the three daughters recorded victory which their success appeared to have partly encouraged three more having identical nationalistic background to vie the crucial elections after Britain’s exit from European Union (EU), known as Brexit.

Of the 14 candidates 8 including the “three daughters” contested as Labour Party candidates, one as Liberal Democrat, one as Friends Party nominee and 4 as independent contenders. As many as 11 Bangladesh-origin candidates vied for seats in the House of Commons through in the 2015 UK elections while of them were nominated by Ed Miliband’s main opposition Labour Party, while three from Liberal Democrats and one from Conservative Party.

After the election, Tulip was inducted into the shadow cabinet of Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and joined Shadow Minister of Education Angela Rayner’s team of four as the Shadow Minister of Early Years education.

She, however, resigned as the shadow minister following Jeremy Corbyn’s decision to impose a three-line whip on Labour MPs to vote in favour of triggering Article 50.

Born in Mitcham, London in 1982, Tulip completed two Master’s degrees — one in English literature and another in Politics, Policy and Government — from King’s College London.

She was a former and first Bengali woman councilor in Regent’s Park and Cabinet Member for Culture and Communities in Camden Council, according to Wikipedia.

Rushanara, the first British lawmaker with roots in Bangladesh, retained her seat in 2015 from East London’s Bethnal Green and Bow constituency.

Hailing from Biswanath in Sylhet, Rushanara, was appointed UK Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy for Bangladesh after the 2015 elections while she made her debut in the House of Commons in 2010 polls.

Earlier, the Oxford-educated Rushanara, performed the responsibility as the “shadow minister” of International Development and Education after being elected as an MP for the first time in 2010.

Rupa was elected in the last UK general elections from Ealing Central and Acton constituency and after the victory she was inducted into the Labour Party shadow cabinet as the home affairs minister.

Rupa is a senior lecturer at the sociology department of the Kingston University. Her ancestral home is in northern Pabna district in Bangladesh.

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina extended her heartiest congratulations to Tulip Siddiq, Rushanara Ali and Rupa Huq on their re- election in the UK polls, saying that they have brightened the face of the people of Bangladesh through the victory.

“The victory of three daughters (Tulip, Rushanara Ali and Rupa) is a matter of pride for us. I hope that that the crown of the victory they brought for the people of the country beam out the ray of light forever,” PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim quoted her as saying.