Dhaka, Monday, June 26, 2006
People ignore Khatme Nabuwat’s hartal call
A 48-hour hartal called by the Khatme Nabuwat Andolan Bangladesh, an organisation of religious bigots trying to whip up anti-Ahmadiyya sentiments, failed to make any impact on life in the northern part of the city on Sunday as people totally ignored the programme.
The bigots announced the hartal in Khilkhet, Airport, Uttara, Turag and Tongi police station areas after police charged batons on their rally in front of the Airport police box on Friday.
But they renewed their threat to besiege the Zia International Airport on Thursday following a clash with the police at Abdullahpur on Sunday in which their Ameer was injured.
No pickets were seen on the streets in areas under the five police stations after lawmen swooped on the only procession brought out by the organisation on the day. Noor Hossain Noorani, the Ameer of the organisation, was injured in police action in the morning.
After the clash, a team of police led by the officer-in-charge of the Uttara police station, took him to Bangladesh Medical College Hospital, where he was undergoing treatment.
The police picked up five bigots from Tongi and Abdullahpur areas in the morning, but released them after a few hours.
An angry Noorani told New Age that the police had attacked him and his men after taking ‘bribe’ from the Ahmadiyya community.
He also took a swipe at the Jamaat leaders Motiur Rahman Nizami and Ali Ahsan Mojaheed for not paying any heed to his three-point demand saying that the Jamaat leaders were afraid lest his organisation wrest control of the Islamist movement.
Noorani’s demands include setting up of a foundation after Prophet Mohammad and handing over of an Ahmadiyya mosque in Satkhira to the Muslims.
Accusing the prime minister, Khaleda Zia and her alliance government of betraying the cause of Islam, Noorani threatened to topple the government if his three-point demand was not met by Thursday.
Large contingents of police were deployed at different points in the areas under the five police stations on the day.
All educational institutions, shopping centres, businesses and the government offices functioned as usual.
The flow of traffic on roads was normal.