Home Bangladesh BNP suspends rally after police action
Bangladesh - October 28, 2023

BNP suspends rally after police action

-Two killed, injured over 100
-BNP-Jamaa’t call daylong hartal today
-AL to hold peace rallies Sunday
-Jamaa’t holds rally peacefully

Special Correspondent: The grand rally of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) began around 12:40 pm in front of the party’s central office at NayaPaltan on Saturday morning but was suspended in the afternoon following police action. The rally was suspended at 2:15 pm when the police fired rubber bullets, sound grenades, and tear gas shells, which forced the BNP leaders and activists to leave the rally venue.
The BNP, the arch political rival of ruling Awami League, announced a dawn-to-dusk hartal across the country to protest the “police attacks” on their leaders and activists and their grand rally at NayaPaltan. Party Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir announced the hartal before leaving the rally stage amid clashes between law enforcers and BNP activists. The hartal will be observed from 6 am to 6 pm today (Sunday).
Jamaat-e-Islami that held a peaceful rally at Arambagh in the city despite police intimidation also called daylong hartal today. Ganatantra Mancha, a like-minded political alliance of BNP also called hartal for today with the same demand.
Meanwhile, the ruling AL announced that they would hold peace rallies across the country protesting the hartal called by the BNP today. The AL general secretary, ObaidulQuader, announced the programs during the party’s peace rally in front of the National Mosque Baitul Mukarram. Quader said that a general strike is now a ‘blunt weapon’ and will not be effective. “BNP is a murderous (party) and a terrorists’ party; they have returned to their old look today,” he added.
Meanwhile, at least a policeman and a Juba Dal leader were killed and over 100 people including 41 cops were injured in separate clashes between law enforcers and BNP activists in Kakrai, Motijheel, Dainik Bangla Intersection and NayaPaltan areas in the city yesterday. Some of them are seriously injured. Ruling party men carrying bamboo sticks joined police during the clashes. The name of the deceased policeman could not be known immediately.
DMCH Police Outpost in-charge, Inspector Bachchu Mia, said that a policeman injured in the clash died in Dhaka Medical College Hospital.
Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s Deputy Commissioner (Media) Faruk Hossain said that 22 injured policemen are undergoing treatment at Rajarbagh Police Hospital and 19 at Dhaka Medical College Hospital.
A Juba Dal leader named ShamimMollah was killed by the police during the clash in Nayapaltan in the capital, as reported by the BNP. He was shot during a clash between BNP activists and police in Nayapaltan on Saturday afternoon. Deceased ShamimMolla is the president of Unit No. 1 of Ward No. 7 of Mugda Thana Jubo Dal. His father’s name is Yusuf Mollah. Injured in the clash, he was taken to Rajarbagh Police Line Hospital. Liton Mahmud, acting member secretary of Dhaka Metropolitan South BNP confirmed that ShamimMolla died there in the evening.
A number of vehicles including three buses, 3 motorbikes and 2 microbuses burnt during and after the BNP rally. The incidents happened at Kakrail, Malibagh and Kamlapur in the afternoon. The miscreants vandalised three vehicles in Dhaka’s Kakrail area during and after the clash between BNP activists and police and ruling party men yesterday. Witnesses said miscreants from a procession vandalised two pick-up vans while passing through the Kakrail area, opposite to the residence of the chief justice around 11 am.
Later, they also vandalised a bus of ‘BoishakhiParibahan’ in front of International Mother Language Institute in the area. Police have arrested a person involved in the attack.
Police detained over 250 BNP-Jamaat men from under-construction building in Dhaka’s Kakrail area and other spots during the clashes with the opposition activists.
A man was injured when BNP men reportedly attacked him, suspecting him to be a supporter of Awami League in the Kakrail area around 12:45 pm.
A bus was also set fire by unknown miscreants at Kakrail intersection at about 5:00pm. Bus driver Monir Hossain told media that two men wearing DB police dress set fire on the bus and escaped the scene by riding on a motorcycle immediately after the incident.
Monir Hossain was crying sitting on the roadside footpath. He said the bus was being used to bring and take back the members of police. He brought a group of policemen on board the bus at about 5:00pm. After the policemen got down, the miscreants set the bus ablaze within 15 minutes.
Police detained nine people from the Nightingale intersection in the capital’s Bijoynagar area this afternoon following a clash between police and BNP activists.
Several media personnel were also injured while on duty during clashes between BNP members and members of law enforcement agencies in Dhaka’s Kakrail area in the afternoon.
The injured are Dhaka Times’ reporter SalehkinTarin; DainikKalbela’sRafsan Jonny; Breaking News’ crime reporter KaziIhsanBinDidar; the daily Ittefaq’s multimedia reporter Sheikh Nasir, staff correspondent Habib Sabuj; and Inqilab’s photojournalist FM Masum.
Of them, Tarin was admitted at National Institute of Traumatology and Orthopaedic Rehabilitation (NITOR), and Rafsan at Dhaka Medical College Hospital. Others received treatment from several hospitals
Later, BGB members were deployed at Kakrail Church crossing to control the situation.
Earlier, thousands of leaders and activists of BNP and its associate bodies gathered in front of the party’s NayaPaltan central office to attend the grand rally to mount pressure on the government to accept their one-point demand.
Earlier, talking with reporters in front of Kakrail Church, Additional Commissioner of Detective Branch (DB) Harun-or-Rashid said that some BNP activists attacked police in front of the Judges’ Residence Complex in Dhaka’s Kakrail yesterday.
He said police have video footage of the incidents adding, “We will identify those involved and take appropriate action.”
Earlier, a chase and counter-chase between police and BNP leaders, activists occurred in Dhaka’s Kakrail area.
Witnesses said leaders and activists of BNP brought out a procession in the Kakrail area and started going towards Inter-Continental hotel around 1:00pm. At one stage, police obstructed them, and BNP leaders, activists started throwing brick chips at the law enforcers.
Later, police fired rubber bullets, used sound grenades and tear gas shells to disperse them.
NayaPaltan turned into a battlefield following a clash between BNP men and members of the law enforcement agencies in the afternoon centerimg the party’s scheduled rally.
Following the clash, the grand rally of the BNP was suspended halfway through the program.
Members of the law enforcement agencies a reportedly used sound grenades and tear shells to disperse BNP men who retaliated with brickbats.
Chased by the police, the BNP men took position in different alleys and streets in Nayapaltan area from there they were pelting brickbats, stones and other objects targeting police and others.
Meanwhile, Dhaka South Mayor Barrister Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh yesterday said that the AL leaders and activists would increase resistance in every single ward of the city to tackle today’s hartal called by the BNP.
“The BNP called a hartal tomorrow (Sunday). This hartal will not be allowed. Every neighbourhood should be prepared to resist,” said the mayor while speaking at the “Peace and Development” rally which kicked off this morning at the southern gate of Baitul Mukarram Mosque on Saturday.
The presence of public transport and other vehicles on Dhaka streets yesterday was relatively thin compared to other days, as tensions escalated surrounding the announced programs of the two major parties, causing significant commuting problems.
People who depend on public transport for their daily commute have been hit hard due to few vehicles on the roads.
Panic has gripped people over the scheduled rallies of BNP and Awami League in the capital.
Most are preferring to stay home unless they have any urgent work.
Though the day is a government holiday, those who work in private organizations are facing severe commuting problems.
The number of private cars, rickshaws and other vehicles on the streets are also few.
Streets in ShanirAkhra, Kakrail, Shantinagar, Mouchak, Dholaipar, Jatrabari, Sayedabad, Gulistan, PuranaPaltan, and Jatiya Press Club areas have few public transport.

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