EC seeking police report on clashes with BNP men

18 November 2018

The Election Commission will ask for a report from police on Wednesday's violent clashes between them and the BNP supporters at Nayapaltan.
The law enforcers will be asked to include photos, videos and give a real picture of the clashes that left three police vehicles vandalised and torched and scores, including over 20 policemen, injured during the sale of the party's nomination forms.
The Commission will write to the inspector general of police within next Sunday seeking the report, EC Joint Secretary Farhad Ahmmed Khan told this news agency on Friday.
The EC will also warn police against harassing anyone not involved in the incident, officials said.
The clashes erupted a day after the EC sent a letter to police asking them to ensure proper enforcement of the electoral code of conduct before the Dec 30 general elections.
BNP workers carrying sticks during clashes with police at Nayapaltan in Dhaka on Wednesday. The move followed days of public suffering in traffic jams in Dhaka due to processions of supporters of aspirants, mainly of the ruling Awami League and the BNP, during nomination form collection or submission.
"Some people take out a procession with elephants, horses and with thousands of people playing drums, which is totally illegal and against the electoral code of conduct. That should be monitored," EC Secretary Helal Uddin Ahmed said after the clashes.
The BNP alleges police attacked its supporters without provocation on orders from the government and ruling Awami League goons posing as opposition activists carried out the arson attacks.
The government and police say the BNP leaders and activists attacked police in a bid to foil the polls after the law enforcers had asked them to refrain from blocking the street while gathering in front of the party offices.
BNP activists vandalise and torch several vehicles during a clash with police in Nayapaltan area in Dhaka on Wednesday.
The ruling Awami League has also demanded EC action against the BNP for violation of the electoral code of conduct through the clashes.
Police have so far arrested at least 63 leaders and activists of the BNP and its affiliates, including its Central Executive Committee Member Nipun Roy Chowdhury, over the clashes.
Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, Standing Committee Member Mirza Abbas, his wife and Jatiyatabadi Mohila Dal chief Afroza Abbas, BNP Vice-Chairman Akhtaruzzaman, its Jatrabarhi unit chief Nabiullah Nabi and Kafil Uddin, a member of the BNP chief's Advisory Council, are also among nearly 200 accused in three cases over the violence.
The law enforcers said, they have identified most of those involved in the violence and all belong to the BNP.
BNP leaders and activists staging a procession after clashes with police at Nayapaltan in Dhaka on Wednesday afternoon.
Afroza led a procession of her supporters carrying banners and festoons to the BNP offices, violating electoral code of conduct, according to the case dossiers. Later, Nabi and Kafil Uddin took out two more processions.
The road was fully blocked when Mirza Abbas led a procession of thousands of supporters to the area, Sub-Inspector Somen Kumar Barua said in one of the cases.
"They did not pay any heed when we requested them to leave a lane open for traffic. We also requested Ruhul Kabir Rizvi to ask the leaders and activists to follow the electoral code of conduct by loudspeaker.
"But the BNP activists attacked police personnel with the intention to kill them," the officer said.
Some crude bombs were found at the scene, he added.

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