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Opposition in poll-bound Bangladesh announces fresh blockade

Opposition in poll-bound Bangladesh announces fresh blockade

Dhaka: Opposition parties in Bangladesh Thursday announced a fresh 72-hour nationwide blockade from Saturday to press for their demands, including postponement of the January 5 general elections.

The BNP-led 18-party opposition alliance called for the fresh blockade after Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina again rejected its demand for a 'non-party' caretaker government with an "appreciable person" as its head for polls oversight.

"The road, railways and waterways blockade programme will start on Saturday at 6 am and will end on Tuesday 6 am," BNP's Joint Secretary General Salahuddin Ahmed announced in a video message from an undisclosed location.

Most of the BNP leaders went into hiding as the government promised to be tough "as much as required" against those who masterminded the senseless violence or ordered to uproot railway tracks, derail trains and torch buses, resulting in the deaths of the innocent people.

A number of senior BNP leaders are already in jail to face charges of instigating violence. Police last night detained another opposition leader and former mayor of Dhaka Sadek Hossain Khoka from Uttara area.

The opposition enforced a 131-hour blockade from Saturday for the second time in a span of a week, which expires today. Twenty-two lives were lost during the blockade.

During the previous spell of blockade from November 26-28, 19 people were killed.


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