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Hartal in Bangladesh Observed Amidst Some Skirmishes

  • Matiur Chowdhury

The main opposition Awami League and its allies yesterday observed a nationwide dawn-to-dusk hartal that was reduced to eight hours in Dhaka city without any major incident in the capital and elsewhere in the country. However, at some places police charged batons on pro-hartal activists in the city and some other places in the country and picked up some opposition activists during the hartal hours. Most educational institutions, business houses and super markets remained closed during the capital city. The Government deployed some 8,000 law-enforcers in the capital to avert untoward incidents during the opposition programme. They were posted at different city points. The hartal program was called off in Chittagong on Wednesday to facilitate holding of an International Islamic Conference in the port city.Ooffices and public banking institutions remained open though the attendance and business were thin. Awami League, 11-party combine, JSD and NAP called the hartal in protest against repression and killing of the Opposition party leaders, unabated price hike of the essentials, demanding trial of the killing of Awami League leaders including SAMS Kibria, resignation of the BNP-Jamaat coalition government, electoral reforms and holding of early general elections.

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