Dhaka, Saturday, August 21, 2004
Ahmadiya headquarter attacked
More than a hundred were injured, five critically, when a group of Sunnis Friday attacked the central Ahmadiya Muslim Jamaat mosque at Bakshibazar in Dhaka.
The Sunnis, led by leaders of Amra Dhaka Basi and Hifajate Khatme Nabuwat Andolan, brought out a procession from Chawkbazar Shahi Mosque after the juma prayers.
The leaders condemned the statements of National Professor Kabir Chowdhury and demanded his arrest and punishment by August 27.
The group earlier said that they would offer juma prayers at the mosque on August 27 and change the sign. They also demanded that the government should declare the Ahmadiyas non-Muslim.
The members of the group began to gather at different mosques at Chawkbazar from the morning on Friday.
They had finally assembled at the Chawkbazar crossing before they marched towards the Ahmadiya headquarters around 2:15pm in a procession.
They planned to head for Muktangan for a rally, but more than a hundred of the people moved towards the central Ahmadiya mosque from half way.
As the group attacked the mosque, the police intercepted them. The Sunnis started pelting stones at the law enforcers.
When the policemen charged at them with truncheons and lobbed tear-gas canisters, they went on the rampage and clashes began near the Aliya Maddrassah and the education board office.
The police also used rubber bullets to disperse the group members. The Sunnis retreated after additional police force had reached the place.
The agitators left the area at around 3:30pm, announcing that they would offer the juma prayers at the central Ahmadiya mosque on August 27.
Most of the injured were given first aid. Only Abu Hanif, Masudur Rahman, Aynul Haque, Abu Taleb and Ali Akkas were taken to Dhaka Medical College Hospital for further treatment.
Amra Dhaka Basi president Shamsul Haque, Mohammad Jamal Naser and Andolan leaders demanded resignation of the officer-in-charge of the Lalbagh police.
The Lalbagh police said no one was arrested and five policemen were injured in the incident.