Protests intensify in Bangladesh after the arrest of opposition leaders

By Dhaka Bureau Report
Published Tue, Dec 27, 2022 5:51 AM

Bangladesh's capital, Dhaka, has become the center of a nationwide protest after some prominent political leaders were arrested. This happened when the opposition party’s declared massive program demanding the step down of current Awami Ligue regime.  Hundreds of Bangladesh Nationalist Party leaders arrested, including party’s secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir. Simultaneously, police arrested countries third largest political party leader Dr. Shafrqur Rahman, who is the President (Ameer) of Bangladesh Jammat-e- Islami.





Jamaat-e-Islami activists conducted protest in Narayanganj in demanding release of Party chief Dr. Shafiqur Rahman

Counter-terrorism officers arrested Jamaat-e-Islami party leader Shafiqur Rahman in Dhaka, metropolitan police spokesman Faruq Ahmed said, without elaborating on the charges.

Md. Asaduzzaman, a senior police official, confirmed Rahman's arrest to Media but declined to provide details, saying they would later inform the media.

A spokesman for Jamaat, the country's third-largest political party, which has been banned from contesting elections since 2012 - condemned the 64-year-old's arrest, saying it was intended to "scuttle the opposition's anti-government movement."

"This is just another episode of the unjust oppression continuing against the party for the last 15 years," Matiur Rahman Akand, Jamaat's publicity secretary, told AFP news agency.

In a separate statement, the party's Secretary General, Maulana ATM Masum said it is "vehemently condemning and protesting" the arrest of Rahman.

Rahman had recently announced an anti-government mass rally in Dhaka on December 24.

He and his party are trying to get Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's government to meet ten demands, such as her resignation and holding free and fair elections while a caretaker government is in place.

After being accused of rigging the last two general elections in 2014 and 2018, the opposition says Hasina can't run a fair election.

They also want Begum Khaleda Zia, an opposition leader and two-time prime minister who is 76 years old and has been in prison for 17 years on corruption charges, to be set free.

On Tuesday, the party said that the arrest would not deter them from participating in the scheduled protest. 

Deteriorating political situation

After the arrest of opposition leader BNP an Jamaat conducted massive rally nationwide. According to the party’s source at least 1 killed and 100 people injured by Police brutal attack. In a statement Jamaat spokesperson claim that the processions were held peacefully but the police opened fire on the processions in Noakhali district which left 30 activists injured. Police also arrested Noakhali district’s Jamaat Nayeb-e-Ameer Maulana Sayed Ahmad and 20 others unjustifiably. Around one hundred Jamaat activists also became injured and more than two hundred activists were arrested from other places of the country including Chittagong city, Rajshahi city, Rangpur city, Dinajpur, Lalmonirhat, Joypurhat, Natore, Satkhira, Kishorganj, Tangail, Manikganj, Brahmanbaria, Chandpur, Sunamganj, Noakhali, Comilla and Borguna district.