The Islami Andolan Bangladesh protest march to the Election Commission headquarters has ended after police blocked the procession in Dhaka’s Shantinagar.
The procession, which aimed to protest the announcement of the schedule for the upcoming general election, started from the north gate at Baitul Mukarram National Mosque around 3:30 am on Wednesday. It proceeded through the Nightingale Intersection to Kakrail and then to the Shantinagar Intersection.
Police blocked the road with barricades on three sides.
The procession breached the first level of the two-tiered security barricades, but could not cross the second.
Maulana Syed Mosaddek Billah Al-Madani, joint secretary general of the party, then made a speech warning against the schedule announcement and called for district-level protests on Thursday.
Traffic was halted on the road after the programme started, but returned to normal around 4:15 pm.
The protest march was blocked because allowing it to proceed all the way would lead to public suffering, said Deputy Commissioner Md Ashraf Hossain of the Ramna Division of police.
Islami Andolan called the protest marching after stating the people would not accept a schedule for a one-sided election held under the ruling Awami League government.
Police took strict security measures around the protest programme.
The EC is set to announce the schedule for the election and the police have taken appropriate security measures across the city, said Salauddin Mia, chief of Paltan Police Station.
In addition to uniformed police, plainclothes police have also been deployed and are on alert, he said. Action will be taken if there is any unrest.
The Islami Andolan Bangladesh announced the march on Tuesday evening amid the ongoing political unrest in Bangladesh.
The people will not accept a schedule announced solely to fulfil the desires of one party, he said.
“It will bring more conflicts if the schedule is announced without a consensus. If they [EC] take that path, the consequences of defying the public will be bad,” said the party's Joint Secretary General Gazi Ataur Rahman.