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Fifth round of blockade from today

FE DESK | November 15, 2023 00:00:00

BNP enforces a fresh two-day blockade across the country from 6:00am today (Wednesday) to press for neutral polls.

The opposition parties called the blockade of road, rail and waterways demanding resignation of the government and general election under a non-party administration.

The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) on Monday announced the fresh two-day nationwide blockade from Wednesday morning, in an escalation of their agitations for neutral polls.

This will be the fifth round of blockade announced by the BNP. The party's Senior Joint Secretary-General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi made the announcement at a virtual press conference on Monday.

He said the blockade will begin at 6:00 am on Wednesday, November 15, and continue until 6:00 am on Friday, November 17, 2023.

Earlier, BNP observed a countrywide dawn-to-dusk hartal on October 29, following violence that erupted between police and BNP supporters during the party's grand rally in the capital on October 28.

Subsequently, BNP and like-minded parties observed a countrywide blockade from October 31 to November 2. The parties also observed multiple blockades on November 5 and 6, November 8 and 9, and November 12 and 13.

A relatively significant increase in traffic movement was observed during the fourth round of the BNP blockade, which began at 6:00 am on Sunday and ended at 6:00 am on Tuesday.

A larger-than-usual public presence was seen on Monday on Dhaka streets compared to the previous spells of the anti-government campaign. The crowds of office-goers at bus stops were also significantly larger.

Law enforcers were on high alert at different key points, including Gulistan, Purana Paltan, Shahbagh, Moghbazar, Farmgate, Kazipara, Shehrapara, Bijoy Sarani and Mirpur-10 areas.

In support of the blockade, there was no visible presence of BNP leaders and activists on the streets.

In contrast, ruling Awami League leaders and activists were seen staying at different points of the city to "prevent any untoward incidents", including "vandalism and arson targeting buses" during the blockade.

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