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Hartal progresses amid stray incidents

Times National Desk - March 5th, 2013

The last day of a two-day hartal (shutdown) enforced by Jamaat-e-Islami is progressing amid some stray incidents across the country on Monday.
Apart from death of one person in Sirajganj and another in Satkhira, no major incident of violence has been reported from anywhere in the country till filing of this report at 1:15pm. Three Jamaat-Shibir activists were bullet-hit in Donachhara in Sitakunda upazila of Chittagong when police opened fire on the marauding pickets to free the Dhaka-Chittagong highway.
Law enforcers detained at least seven people in the capital during picketing.
Vandalism, arson and picketing were also reported from Barisal, Jhenidah, Kurigram and Sirajganj districts.
In Dhaka, police picked up five people suspecting them as Jamaat-Shibir activists when they brought out a brisk procession at Banasri around 7:30am, said Sirajul Islam, officer-in-charge of Khilgaon Police Station.
Police detained two more pickets for their attempt to vandalise a pick-up van at Shyambazar in Old Dhaka around 7:45am, said Rafiqul Islam, OC of Sutrapur Police Station.
Besides, a passenger was injured as he jumped off a BRTC bus when hartal supporters tried to vandalise the vehicle at Dhalpur around 6:45am.
At least 1,500 Jamaat-Shibir men damaged railway tracks at Rajapur level crossing in Kotchandpur upazila around 3:00am, halting train movement on Khulna-Ishwardi route for an hour.
On information, members of police, Rapid Action Battalion and Border Guard Bangladesh rushed to the spot and dispersed the activists.
Jamaat called the 48-hour countrywide hartal to protest against the death penalty for Sayedee for his wartime offences.
Since a tribunal awarded death penalty to Sayedee on Thursday, a total of 63 persons were killed across the country until Sunday.
BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia has also declared a nationwide dawn-to-dusk hartal for Tuesday protesting what she termed as ‘genocide’ the deaths in Thursday’s fierce clashes with law enforcers.