Half-day hartal in Sylhet passes off peacefullyStaff Correspondent . Sylhet
The half-day hartal, which was enforced by the Jatiyatabadi Swechchhasebak Dal in Sylhet for immediate release of the organisation’s central vice-president Shamsuzzaman, passed peacefully in the city and elsewhere in the district without any major incidents.
A mobile court led by an executive magistrate sentenced a pro-hartal activist to 7 days of imprisonment and fined three others Tk 2,000 each during the hartal.
Ten persons, including Kotwali thana’s officer-in-charge Ataur Rahman, were injured in a clash between the pro-hartal activists and law enforcers.
The clash began at around 10:00am when the police charged the JSD leaders and activists with lathis to disperse their procession in front of the Central Shaheed Minar.
The JSD activists later hurled brickbats at the lawmen, which injured Kotwali thana’s OC and two constables, said sources in the police.
Four JSD activists, who were picked up during the clash at Chowhatta, were later produced before a mobile court, which sentenced Badrul Azad Rana to 7 days of imprisonment and fined three others Tk 2,000 each for assaulting the police.
Executive magistrate Tareq Mohammed Zakaria, also Sadar upazila assistant land commissioner, confirmed the news of punishment when contacted by New Age.
At least 7 pro-hartal activists were also injured in the police attack, said sources in the JSD and Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal.
JCD’s central information and research affairs secretary, Abdul Ahad Khan Jamal, claimed that at least 10 members of the BNP and its front organisations were arrested during the hartal.
But Sylhet Metropolitan Police’s additional commissioner, Abdullah Al-Azad, told New Age that only 4 persons were detained during Tuesday’s half-day hartal and sentenced and fined by a mobile court.
Except the clash in front of the Central Shaheed Minar, the half-day hartal was observed peacefully in the city.
The pro-hartal activists could not take up strategic positions on the streets for picketing as most of the key points were in the possession of the police, said observers.
Long-range buses did not leave the bus-terminals during the hartal, though a large number of rickshaws and auto-rickshaws were seen plying the streets, said city dwellers.
The inter-city trains, however, ran on schedule, said the station manager.
Shamsuzzaman, also BNP Sylhet city unit’s senior joint-convener, was the prime accused in the case that was filed in connection with the disappearance of JCD’s district unit assistant secretary Iftekhar Ahmed Dinar, who went missing from Uttara in Dhaka on April 3.
Shamsuzzaman appeared before the Dhaka Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s Court on Monday with a prayer for regular bail, but the court rejected his bail petition and ordered the police to take him to jail, said sources in the court.
Dinar’s wife Priscilla Parvin Pinki filed a case on May 11 with the Dhaka CMMC, accusing Shamsuzzaman Zaman and 13 leaders of Sylhet BNP and its front organisations of kidnapping her husband, said party sources.
The High Court on May 22 gave Shamsuzzaman a 4-week interim bail in the case and asked him to appear in the lower court at the end of the bail period.
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