The holding of free, fair, and credible elections in Bangladesh remains a big challenge. In an effort to ensure credible, free and fair elections, the Constitution was amended, known as the Constitution (Thirteenth Amendment) Act 1996. This provided some extraordinary powers to the titular President without mechanisms of proper accountability. This paper critically analyses the provisions of this amendment, particularly the role of the President. We argue that this innovation in holding election is itself unconstitutional. In light of the experiences from the events leading to the declaration of emergency, the role of the President during the caretaker mode needs to be re-examined. It argues that formal provisions of the constitution through important but successful enforcement of constitutional provisions, including holding free and fair elections, largely depends on political culture and the willingness of the political parties, including civil society, to abide by those formal provisions along with their spirit.