Terror spread throughout Bogra from Sunday morning as activists of the Jamaat-e-Islami and their student wing Islami Chhatra Shibir took out ‘militia-like’ processions, attacked various sites and took part in sporadic clashes with the police.
Faced with the spate of violence, the local administration has issued Section 144 in the municipality area for an unspecified period of time.
Meanwhile, those who went to the area to repair the damaged rail tracks were forced to return as they were not allowed to carry out the work.
Jamaat and Shibir activists were beckoned following announcements made through loudspeakers of various mosques from the early hours of the day. Processions were out by dawn, ultimately leading the attacks.
Jamaat-Shibir activists launched coordinated attacks on police outposts at Naruli, Fulbari, Stadium and Mokamtala after 5am, said Bogra Sadar Police Station Sub-Inspector Lutfur Rahman.
Police were compelled to beat a retreat from the outposts in the face of violent attacks.
Soon after, a violent Jamaat mob of hundreds attacked the Shahjahanpur Police Station, forcing police to fire in self-defence, the station’s Inspector Atiur Rahman told bdnews24.com. “Three were killed on spot in the firing.”
Bangladesh Army personnel have been called in to guard the police station but they returned in the evening, he added.
Jamaat activists vandalized the office of ‘Muktijoddha Command Council’ at Shahjahanpur.
After the attack on the police station and the out-posts, sporadic clashes between Jamaat-Shibir activists and the police were reported from Shibganj, Shahjahanpur, Bogra zero-point and several other areas.
Shutdown supporters attacked a RAB vehicle at Bogra Sadar's Yakubia school intersection at around 7.30am, witnesses said. It started with a chain of clashes as RAB fought back. At least two people were killed in this incident.
A youth, Alamgir Hossain died of bullet injuries, local sources said. Police did not confirm the death.
Another youth Titu died before he could be taken to the hospital, said Siddique Hossain, a doctor of the emergency unit of Bogra Shaheed Zia Medical College. Thirteen more people were admitted to the hospital with bullet injuries.
Korotoa Courier Service and private television channel ATN Bangla’s local office were vandalised and torched, witnesses say.
Authorities had imposed section 144 on the Bogra municipal area for an indefinite period of time, Assistant Police Superintendent Mokbul Hossain told bdnews24.com Bogra Correspondent.
“The local administration announced section 144 and banned all forms of gatherings”, he said.
Jamaat supporters torched the house of district Awami League President Mamtazuddin at Kalitala at around 6.30am despite the prohibitory orders.
District Awami League Legal Affairs Secretary Aman Ullah told bdnews24.com that Jamaat supporters first tried to vandalise the house while shouting slogans but then set it on fire before running away.
People from the area soon doused the flames.
They also attempted to vandalise and set fire to the house of MP for Bogra-1 constituency, Abdul Mannan, leaders of the Awami League said.
Hundreds of Jamaat supporters, brandishing sticks, attacked the Bogra Railway Station and damaged it by setting the platform on fire at around 8am, said Station Master Belal Hossain. They set the station’s platform and official papers on fire.
The pro-shutdown activists uprooted the rail tracks near the Governement Azizul Haque College and Shahartali’s Saabgram area. Rail service was suspended following the attacks.
Jamaat-Shibir activists attacked the upazila Awami League office and set it on fire. They also attacked the residence of Upazila Awami League President Mizanur Rahman, OC Monirul Islam of Dupchachira Police Station said.
At one point the pro-shutdown activists attempted to cordon off the station, said OC Monirul.
Nandigram UNO office was vandalised and set on fire, said OC Aminur Rahman of Nandigram Police Station.
Several stalls of the Trade Fair organised by Bogra Chamber of Commerce were set on fire in city’s Gudarpara after 10am, said a leaseholder Abdul Matin.
Bogra’s Thanthania Fire Service & Civil Defence Station Officer Sohel Rana told bdnews24.com that they were aware of the arson but their engines could not reach there since strike supporters had placed blockades on the roads with tree trunks.
"Our cars cannot pass… We are being threatened.”
Sadar Police Station Sub-Inspector Lutfor Rahman said, “BGB members are here alongside the police. We are trying our best to maintain law and order.”
Jamaat-Shibir men unleashed nationwide violence soon after their leader Delwar Hossain Sayedee was sentenced to death on Thursday. At least 40 people were killed in Bangladesh until Saturday.
Jamaat has called for 48-hour shutdown beginning Sunday, while the BNP has called for a strike on Tuesday.
Rail repair obstructed
The repair team was obstructed by a group of men when they went to Government Azizul Haque College and Saabgram areas with GRP Police, Bogra Rail Station Master Belal Hossain said. So the repair could not be done.