Four people, including a teenage boy, were killed and around 400 injured as BNP-Jamaat activists clashed with cops and ruling party men across the country during the second day of the 60-hour hartal yesterday.
The deceased include an upazila unit president of BNP in Jhenidah and a Jubo Dal leader in Tangail. Fourteen-year-old Mohammad Arzu was shot dead in Chandpur.
A trucker lost his life as he lost control of the steering and the vehicle skidded into a roadside ditch after some hartal supporters had hurled brickbats at him at Satkania in Chittagong.
With the four deceased, the death toll from clashes rose to nine as of last night since the shutdown began on Sunday. The BNP-led 18-party opposition combine called the 60-hour shutdown demanding restoration of caretaker government system.
BNP lawmaker (Joypurhat-2) Golam Mostafa sustained injuries in a clash between BNP-Jamaat men and ruling Awami League activists at Pachurmor in Joypurhat town around 11:30am yesterday, reported our Dinajpur correspondent quoting witnesses.
Pickets hurled a crude bomb at a vehicle of private TV station Channel 24, leaving a reporter injured in the capital's Mouchak, while some pro-hartal men beat up a cameraman of Somoy TV in Rajshahi. A district correspondent of Rtv was injured in a clash between the AL and BNP men at Kanaikhali in Natore.
Our district correspondents report: BNP-Jamaat men vandalised houses and looted shops owned by Hindus, uprooted railway tracks in Lalmonirhat, damaged a pilgrim-carrying bus in Bogra, and set fire to AL and Jubo League offices in Pabna.
In Old Dhaka, crude bombs went off on the premises of Dhaka District and Sessions Judge Court, on the rooftop of Dhaka police super's office, and at the entrance to Dhaka deputy commission's office.
Pro-hartal activists also blasted cocktails in more than 100 places in the capital. They set ablaze an AL office at Dania and torched and vandalised at least eight vehicles, including a minibus at Shahbagh, said police.
In Jhenidah, a group of about eight miscreants threw crude bombs on Abul Hossain, 55, president of Harinakundu upazila BNP and chairman of Daulatpur Union Parishad in the upazila, at Daulatpur bazar while he was returning home from office around 12:00 noon.
As Abul fell on the road, miscreants hacked and shot him to ensure his death, said Harinakundu police.
District BNP president Moshiur Rahman accused local AL cadres of committing the murder. Denying the allegation, AL district general secretary Azizur Rahman said Abul was murdered in an internal feud of BNP.
Activists of opposition combine set fire to a Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) office and at least 15 business establishments owned by the ruling party men at Harinakundu upazila.
In Chandpur, at least 20 AL and BNP activists were injured as they fought pitched battles at the town's Puranbazar.
Witnesses said the clash ensued when some ruling party men chased a BNP procession at Loharpul of Puranbazar area around 8:30am.
The rival groups regrouped within four hours and got engaged in another clash. Police fired rubber bullets and tear gas shells to disperse the troublemakers.
A local resident Mohammad Arzu received bullets in his head and other parts of his body and died on way to a hospital.
Although district BNP claimed that Arzu was a Chhatra Dal activist, victim's mother Farida Begum said her son was never involved with any political organisation.
The district administration imposed section 144 in the municipality area till evening today, said Amir Zafar, Chandpur superintended of police.
In Chittagong, trucker Md Wasim, 32, was going to Cox's Bazar from the port city, with different grocery commodities loaded in his vehicle.
When he was crossing Chhdaha area of Satkania upazila, some hartal supporters started hurling brickbats at the truck. Getting panicky, Wasim lost control of the steering. The vehicle skidded into a roadside ditch, leaving the driver dead, said Nazmul Hasan, assistant superintendent of police (south), quoting witnesses.
On information, police rushed to the spot and recovered the body.
In Lalmonirhat, a passenger train from Shantahar station was derailed as pro-hartal activists uprooted railway tracks near Mohendranagar station in Lalmonirhat Sadar upazila, leaving at least 50 passengers and the train driver injured.
Some passengers complained that they were mugged by some unidentified masked men when the train was derailed.
Injured train driver Manik Miah said miscreants had uprooted six to seven feet of the track. The number of casualty was less as the train was running slowly, he added.
Hartal supporters also uprooted railway tracks on Lalmonirhat-Burimari land port route near Hatibandha upazila, disrupting train services for few hours.
In Kishoreganj, one Hasan Ali of Batpara in Kuliarchar upazila died of cardiac arrest at Zahirul Islam Medical College Hospital in Bajitpur yesterday evening, said hospital sources.
Mazharul Islam, general secretary of district BNP, claimed that Hasan was a Jubo Dal activist. He fell sick from a tear gas canister lobbed by police during a clash between the opposition activists and law enforcers at Agarpur bus stop.
Subrata Kumar Saha, officer-in-charge of Kuliarchar Police Station, said no such clash took place at that spot.
Meanwhile, at least 50 people, including 10 policemen, were injured in a clash between the opposition and AL activists at Bajitpur bazar in Bajitpur upazila.
The local administration imposed section 144 in Bajitpur to be effective from 5:00am today.
In Narsingdi, Shibir activists hurled two crude bombs on the premises of deputy commission's office, damaging the vehicle of the additional district magistrate.
In Chapainawabganj, miscreants cut the tendons of Chhatra League leader Sabuj Rahman Sweet in his right hand and left leg at Sibganj fishery market in the evening.
Local BCL leaders alleged that Chhatra Shibir men carried out the attack on Sabuj.
Explosion, vandalism, and running battles took place also in Bogra, Pabna, Patuakhali, Noakhali, Brahmanbaria, Dinajpur, Gazipur, Jhenidah, Thakurgaon, Pirojpur, Chapainawabganj, Netrakona, Jamalpur, Barisal, Munshiganj, Feni, and some other districts, leaving at least 275 more injured.
Police detained 61 people in the capital and 58 more elsewhere in the country.
SHIBIR MESS RAIDED
Ramna police last night raided a mess of Shibir activists at the capital's Noyatola and detained three Shibir men.
Police said they raided the mess at 11:00pm and recovered 10 crude bombs and bomb making materials.