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48-hr hartal underway peacefully

A shibir activist bullet-hit in Chittagong

New Age Online

The second and the last day of 48-hour nationwide hartal, enforced by the BNP-led 18-party alliance has been progressing peacefully on Tuesday.
The opposition enforced the strike demanding scraping of the 10th parliamentary election held on January 5 and protesting ‘oppression on opposition activists and mass arrest.’
In the capital, the hartal was underway without any report of violence as of 12:30pm. Movements of vehicles on the city streets were relatively heavier while the law enforcers were deployed at different strategic points to avert any violence.
Rickshaws and auto-rickshaws dominated the streets in the morning.
However, no long-route bus left Mohakhali, Sayedabad and Gabtoli terminals since morning.
In Chittagong a picket was bullet-wounded following a clash between hartal supporters and the police. A flash procession rocked the Askar Dighir Par area around 10:00am when the police intercepted. The hartal supporters blew off two hand made bombs. In retaliation, the police fired shotgun bullets when one of the pickets got wounded. His name could not be known immediately. Mirza Abu Sayeed, assistant commissioner of police under Kotwali zone said he was a Shibir activist.
In Rajshahi, some female activists of BNP brought out a procession at Shaheb Bazar in the city around 9:00am. Police used water cannon to disperse them.
Meanwhile, a contingent of pro-hartal supporters gathered in the city’s New Market area to bring out a procession around 10:00am while the police fired several rounds of teargas shells and rubber bullets to scatter them.
Rajshahi Metropolitan police commissioner Mahbubur Rahman confirmed the matter and said that the law enforcers dispersed them to avert any untoward situation.
In Barisal, the activists of 18-party alliance marched on the different streets in the city in the morning. Movement of long distance launches was thinner while long-route buses did not ply.
In Sylhet, pro-hartal supporters brought out a procession and staged a rally at Bandar Bazar in the city at about 11:00am. No violence took place in the first hours of hartal, our correspondent reported.
In Rangpur, the shutdown supporters tried to march on Grand Hotel intersection after at 12:00pm while police chased and charged batons to disperse the activists.
In Khulna, the general strike was progressing without any tangible violence.
The shutdown will end at 6:00am Wednesday. However, the BNP-led opposition alliance has also enforced nationwide rail-road-waterway blockade for an indefinite period since January 1.




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