Sunday, June 23, 2024

4 more killed in hartal violence

Death toll rises to 14
At least four people were killed and more than 150 injured in violence across the country on Tuesday, taking the death toll in the opposition-sponsored 60-hour hartal to 14. On the concluding day of the shutdown on Tuesday, two people were killed in Cox’s Bazar and one each in Magura and Chittagong. Five people each were killed on Sunday and Monday as the BNP-led 18-party alliance enforced the 60-hour strike from 6am Sunday to push for the restoration of the non-party caretaker government.
In Cox’s Bazar, at least two people were killed and 30 injured in a fierce clash between Jamaat-Shibir activists and police during a post-hartal rally in Kutubdia upazila around 6:45 pm, less than an hour after the completion of the nationwide general strike.
Kutubdia Jammat leader ASM Shahriar Chowdhury identified the deceased as party activists Yunus, 20, and Abu Bakkar Siddique, 55.
Witnesses said Jamaat-Shibir activists arranged a post-hartal rally, protesting the killing of their leaders and activists during the 60-hour hartal. At one stage, the protesters locked in a clash with the law enforcers who tried to disperse the rally.
At one stage, police opened fire leaving Yunus and Abu Bakar dead and 30 others injured, claimed Shahriar.
In Magura, BNP activist Maruf, 22, was killed and five people were injured in a clash between activists of the opposition alliance and the ruling Awami League in Mohammadpur upazila.
Monirul Islam, officer-in-charge of Mohammadpur Police Station, said the clash took place when local AL men obstructed a BNP procession at Dhuail bazaar around 11 am.
In another incident, an unidentified youth died while he jumped into a canal to save himself from a fierce clash between AL and BNP activists in Fultola area of Boalkhali upazila in Chittagong at noon. Zahirul Haque, OC of Boalkhali Police Station, confirmed the news.
Kazi Mainul Islam, OC of Hazaribagh Police Station, was injured in a bomb attack, allegedly carried out by Shibir activists, in Dhanmondi area of the capital. Sheikh Maruf Hasan, deputy commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (Ramna), said Shibir activists had brought out a brisk procession in support of the hartal in the area around 6:30 am. On receiving information, a team of law enforcers, led by Mainul, rushed to the spot. The pro-hartal activists hurled three crude bombs at the police, thereby injuring Mainul. Later, he was admitted to the Dhaka Medical College Hospital.
Saiful Islam, sub-inspector of Shah Ali Police Station in Mirpur, was injured in his right hand when hartal supporters brought out a procession near the Sony Cinema Hall and vandalised several vehicles.
Rahima Aktar, a nine-year-old girl, sustained severe splinter injuries in her eyes in Balurmath area of Jurain around 10:30 am.
At 6:20 am, Shibir activists torched a bus in front of Tejgaon College in Farm Gate area.
Picketers exploded at least 10 crude bombs in Goran tempo stand area.
Some Shibir activists brought out a procession in the morning and blasted three to four crude bombs in Hatirjheel under Rampura thana.
At about 6:50 am, another group of hartal supporters brought out a procession in Dhalpur of Jatrabari. They exploded four crude bombs.
Hartal supporters tried to set fire to rail tracks near the Moghbazar level crossing around 8:20 am and exploded three crude bombs there. Later, law enforcers dispersed them from the spot.
Some unidentified miscreants hurled a crude bomb at the BNP’s Nayapaltan central office around 8:30 am. No one was hurt in the incident.
The Shahbagh police recovered two live bombs from Salimullah Muslim Hall of Dhaka University. Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) personnel detained three people and recovered three live crude bombs from their possession from the city’s Sabujbagh early in the morning.
A Channel i cameraman and five others were injured during a clash between the police and Jubo Dal activists at Kazi Alauddin Road of Bongsal area in the morning.
Some miscreants threw five crude bombs at the residence of labour minister Rajiuddin Ahmed Raju in the city’s Banani area early in the morning. However, no causality was reported. Another group of miscreants hurled several crude bombs at the residence of BNP leader Mirza Abbas in Shahjahanpur area in the afternoon.
Similar cases of violence were also repored from other parts of the city, including Goran, Rampura, Jatrabari, Moghbazar Rail Gate and Nayapaltan.
Most shops, adjacent to the main thoroughfares, kept their shutters down. No inter-district buses left their terminals.
Large contingents of police and members of other law enforcement agencies, including Rapid Action Battalion, Border Guard Bangladesh and plain-clothes policemen were put on high alert to avert any untoward situation. Additional law enforcers were deployed at different strategic points. The AL and its front organisations brought out anti-hartal processions in different parts of the city.
Our Gazipur correspondent reports: At least 50 activists of the BNP-led 18 party alliance, including Gazipur City Corporation (GCC) mayor MA Mannan and a councilor, were hurt in a clash between the police and hartal supporters in Shibbari area of Gazipur town in the morning. A sub-inspector and a constable of Joydebpur Police Station were also injured.
In Rajshahi, at least 10 people of the 18-party alliance were injured when police charged batons on their procession at Sonadighi intersection in the city.
In Dinajpur’s Biral upazila, at least 15 people were injured in a fierce clash between activists of the opposition alliance and the AL. The police had to fire teargas canisters and rubber bullets to bring the situation under control, our correspondent reports.
Shamsur Rahman, convener of the Swechhasebak League, was seriously injured during a clash between ruling and opposition activists in Katla union parishad area under Birampur upazila. Three others were injured in Amtoli under Dinajpur sadar area.
In Bogra, at least 20 vehicles, including 12 trucks, four motorbikes and four CNG-run auto rickshaws, in Shahjahanpur area were torched, while hartal supporters blasted more than 50 crude bombs in Dhanut upazila during the hartal.
Sporadic incidents of violence were also reported from Meherpur, Brahmanbaria, Pabna, Jamalpur, Rangpur, Lalmonirhat, Joypurhat, Sylhet and Sirajganj districts, which left at least 50 people injured.

-With The Independent input

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