The main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party and its allies on Monday declared another 48-hour countrywide blockade from Wednesday morning to Friday morning.
The announcement of the fresh programme came before the 48-hour hartal ended this morning, pressing for the resignation of the Awami League government and handing over power to a party-natural election-time administration.
BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi came up with the announcement of the blockade at a virtual press briefing.
It will be the sixth round of the blockade programme of the opposition parties since October 31.
Rizvi said that the blockade would begin at 6:00am on Wednesday and end at 6:00m on Friday.
Rizvi said that the blockade was to mount pressure on the government to quit, hold the next election under a non-party neutral government, and release party leaders and activists, including its secretary general, Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
He said that other opposition parties, who had long been carrying out a simultaneous movement with the BNP, would also observe similar programmes.
Rizvi thanked the country’s people and the opposition leaders and activists for making their hartal programme a success.
The second day of the countrywide 48-hour general strike enforced by opposition parties passed on Monday amid violence and arson attacks on vehicles.
Long-route buses remained off the highways, though the number of public transport in the capital, Dhaka, increased compared to the first day of the hartal.
Members of law-enforcement agencies, including the 425 petrol teams of the Rapid Action Battalion and the 231 platoons of Border Guard Bangladesh, were on the streets to quell the unrest.
Leaders and activists of the BNP, Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami, Ganatantra Mancha, Gono Odhikar Parishad factions, the 12-party alliance, the AB Party, and the BNP’s partners in the ongoing simultaneous anti-government movement brought out processions in different parts of the country.
Unidentified miscreants set fire to a BRTC double-decker in Dhaka’s Mirpur-10 crossing next to a police box on Monday afternoon.
Two fire-fighter units rushed to the spot at 2:35pm and doused the blaze in 10 minutes, said Fire Service media cell officer Shahjahan Sikder.
Mirpur police station officer-in-charge Mohammad Mohsin said that no one was injured in the incident.
Police arrested Swechchasebak Dal Rupnagar unit leader Sajedul Alam, claiming that he was near the spot during the incident.
Around 4:30pm, a staff bus of Sonali Bank was torched near Modhumita Hall, said Dhaka Metropolitan Police Motijheel division deputy commissioner Hayatul Islam Khan, adding that no one was injured in the incident.
Another bus of Tanjil Paribahan was set on fire in the Paltan area around 5:10pm. However, no casualties were reported as all passengers got out safely, said police.
Pedestrians later doused the blaze, he said.
According to the Fire Service, a total of 27 vehicles were torched across the country in two days, from Saturday evening to Monday evening, during the hartal.
The vehicles include 17 buses, one truck, six trucks, a pickup van, a CNG-run auto-rickshaw and three train compartments.
Meanwhile, a crude bomb was blasted at Metropolitan Sessions Judge Court premises on Monday afternoon after the postponement of the bail hearing of BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
The blast around 4:00pm created panic in the area, prompting people and lawyers to rush for safety, reported New Age court correspondent.
Kotwali police station officer-in-charge Shahinur Rahman said that no one was injured in the blast, and police started an investigation to find the people behind the incident.
Two crude bombs were hurled in front of Mouchak Market from the adjoining flyover, police said, adding that none were injured in the incident.
New Age correspondent in Sylhet reported that BNP leaders and activists brought out a procession in the morning and allegedly vandalised four vehicles, including two CNG-run auto-rickshaws, a truck, and a pickup van at Mendibag Point and Chandirpul crossing in the city.
Dakshin Surma police station OC Md Shamsuddoha claimed that the BNP activists also blasted several crude bombs while police dispersed them and arrested a JCD activist.
Opposition parties also observed a nationwide dawn-to-dusk hartal a day after police foiled the BNP’s grand rally in Dhaka’s Naya Paltan, demanding the resignation of the government on October 28.
On November 15, the Election Commission announced the schedule for the next general election, fixing January 7 as polling day.
Published on: 2023-11-20 18:53:29.789134 +0100 CET