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BNP announces 48-hour blockade from Sunday as traffic thickens

FE REPORT | November 24, 2023 00:00:00

To press home its one-point demand for immediate resignation of the government, the BNP has announced another 48-hour nationwide transport blockade starting from Sunday.

The party will block roads, waterways and railways across the country from 6 am on Sunday to 6 am on Tuesday, with a two-day break on Friday and Saturday.

The announcement of the seventh spell of blockade came on Thursday amid the sixth one nearing its end, which saw almost regular traffic on Dhaka streets. BNP Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi announced the programme in a virtual briefing on Thursday afternoon.

BNP has been observing hardline political campaigns like hartal and blockade since police clashed with BNP leaders and activists at the party's grand rally in Dhaka on October 28.

Their long-time ally Jamaat-e-Islami and like-minded parties are also observing the same programmes separately. So far, the opposition camps have observed a 15-day blockade in six phases and a three-day strike in two phases.

On Thursday, traffic flow on Dhaka streets thickened, while long-haul buses from and to the capital continued to find passengers few and far between. There were sporadic arsons and vandalism as usual.

Miscreants set fire to an Azmeri Glory Paribahan bus near Bijoynagar Water Tank in the capital on Thursday. An official at the Fire Service and Civil Defence central office told the FE that they received information about the fire at around 12:53 pm.

He said that two units of firefighters rushed to the spot and extinguished the blaze at around 1:03 pm. However, there was no report of casualties.

City dwellers said that they had to face difficulties in getting public buses to reach their offices during previous hartals and blockades.

Meanwhile, law enforcement agencies, including police and the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), were deployed at different roundabouts and key points in the capital to thwart arson attacks during the blockade.

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