Three killed in fresh political violence in Bangladesh : worldleaks
Three persons were killed in Bangladesh on Tuesday as main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) applied a 48-hour nationwide blockade demanding postponement of general elections on January 5 among a deadlock over the interim government.
Activists of BNP and its fundamentalist ally Jamaat-e- Islami uprooted railway tracks in major routes, torched buses, cars and trains, and exploded crude bombs after the government refused their calls to postpone the elections, witnesses and media reports said.
An unidentified man was killed in clashes between opposition activists and the police in northwestern Sirajganj.
Acts of sabotages were reported from various other districts.
The other two deaths were reported on Monday night soon after the announcement of the election schedule.
Police said a youth died immediately after a crude bomb hit him on the head in central Comilla and a rickshaw-puller was killed in the capital in a different incident.
Railway links between Dhaka and southeastern port city of Chittagong and northeastern Sylhet were cut off as the opposition activists uprooted of train tracks at central Brahmanbaria while they set on fire several compartments of a stationed train at northwestern Iswardy.
Buses were stopped as the opposition coalition last night declared the blockade for highways, railways and waterways to protest against the “election of farce”, prompting authorities to call out paramilitary BGB troops to guard the capital and other major cities.
Chief Election Commissioner Kazi Rakibuddin last night declared the election schedule, pitting ruling Awami League against the BNP, which has been demanding that the polls plan be shelved till the settlement of the dispute over the modality of the interim government.
Rakibuddin said the statutory independent constitutional body so far awaited the major parties to reach an understanding over their dispute “but now we don’t have time to delay further” as the commission was compelled to hold the polls within January 24 under a constitutional deadline.
According to the schedule December 2 is the last date for submission of nomination papers, meaning the opposition must decide its stance on the polls in the next one week.
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