Early morning violence sweeps through the district, Section 144 imposed
AT least nine persons, including three women, were killed and scores hurt when Jamaat-Shibir men and locals clashed with law enforcers, attacked a police station and six outposts, vandalised and torched different offices in northern district of Bogra Sunday morning.
Four, including the three women, died in Shajahanpur upazila, three in Bogra Sadar and two in Shibganj upazila, reports our Bogra correspondent.
Alleged activists of Jamaat-e-e-Islami and its student wing, Islami Chhatra Shibir, tricked hundreds of villagers in different upazilas of the northern district to come out on the roads in the early morning and carried out the vandalism.
The violence, which began around 4:00am, stopped four hours later following reports of army deployment.
People in different upazilas said they heard announcements made from loudspeakers in the early hours of Sunday that Jamaat leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee could be seen in the moon.
Moved by the announcement, hundreds of people, mostly from Shahjahanpur, Kahalu, Shibganj and Dupchanchia upazilas came out of their houses to and started marching towards Bogra Sadar upazila headquarters protesting death penalty awarded to Sayedee for wartime offences.
POLICE STATION ATTACKED
A few thousand people attacked Shahjahanpur Police Station in Shahjahanpur upazila, which is located near the Bogra Cantonment, around 6:00am.
“They beat up policemen here indiscriminately in the sudden attacks,” Mahmudul Alam, officer-in-charge of the police station, told The Daily Star.
Police opened fire to bring the situation under control, said Bogra Superintendent of Police, Mozammel Haq.
Four people died there.
Atiar Rahman, inspector (investigation)of the police station, identified the four as Arjinba Begum, 45, of Shajapur Pashchimpara; Monjila Begum, 48; Achhia Begum, 45; and Abdur Rahman, 60, of Domorpukur Moldolpara.
As the situation was going out of control, the district administration requested for army deployment.
Responding to the call, two platoons of army men were deployed there, the Inter-Services Public Relations said.
As they marched towards town centre Satmatha, the protesters vandalised police outposts at Naruli, Shaheed Chandu Stadium, Fulbari, Uposhor and Koigari.
When they neared Satmatha around 4:30am, law enforcers tried to disperse the mob near Yakubia Girls High School, triggering a clash.
The protesters hurled brick chips and cocktails at members of police, Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) and Rapid Action Battalion (Rab), prompting the law enforcers to fire rubber bullets and teargas shells.
Angry mob vandalised and set fire to the offices of SA Paribahan and Karotoa Courier Service.
They also tried to vandalise private television channel ATN Bangla’s office there but only managed to burn the showroom of ATN products on the ground floor of the building.
The protesters set fire to the house of Momtaz Uddin, president of district AL unit, in the town.
The vandalism continued for 50 minutes.
Three persons died in clashes in Bogra Sadar. Their identities however could not be learnt immediately.
To contain violence, Section 144 was imposed in Bogra municipality since 7:00am banning any gathering and would remain in force until further order, Arifuzzaman, Nezarat Deputy Collector (NDC) of the district, told The Daily Star.
Several journalists were injured while covering the clashes.
The protesters vandalised Mokamtola outpost in Shibganj upazila.
Two persons died there during clashes with the law enforcers. They are: Ziaul Islam, 30, of Par Atrai area and Dulu Mia of Muradpur.
Local administration said Section 144 was also imposed in Nandigram upazila.