Gazipur district administration today imposed Section 144 at Bhawal Bodr-E-Alam Government College ground –where both the BNP and BCL have declared to hold a rally on Saturday — and the adjacent areas to ward off any untoward incidents. “All kinds of rallies, demonstrations and gatherings have been restricted at Bhawal Bodr-E-Alam Government College ground and surrounding areas from 2:00pm till further notice,” this is being announced by loud speakers in Gazipur on behalf of the district magistrate. The Gazipur district administration came up with the decision after a meeting held between District Commissioner Nurul Islam and Superintendent of Police Harun-ur-Rashid, reports our Gazipur correspondent. As both the BNP and Awami League have failed to come to a consensus, police will not let any of the political parties to hold rallies in Gazipur tomorrow. No political parties would be allowed to hold rallies at Bhawal Bodr-E-Alam Government College ground in Gazipur Sadar upazila on Saturday in the interest of law and order, the DC told reporters today. He said neither BNP nor Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL), the student front of AL obtained permission to stage rallies at the venue on that day. “We will initiate necessary measures so that none can create any anarchy in the area centering the political event,” the DC added. Meanwhile, the BNP-led 20-party alliance will enforce a dawn-to-dusk hartal in Gazipur district and stage demonstrations across the country tomorrow protesting restrictions on its rally where Khaleda Zia was scheduled to address. A large number of law enforcers including police equipped with three water cannons were deployed at the venue to avert any untoward incident. Talking to The Daily Star, BNP spokesperson Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir criticised the government for imposing section 144 and said it has been done in a planned way to keep BNP away from political activities. “The government wants to stay Khaleda Zia aside from politics. And section 144 has been imposed in Gazipur as part of its plan,” he alleged. Next course of action will be devised in a party forum meeting protesting the government’s atrocities,” he added. Earlier in the day, Mirza Fakhrul announced that the party’s prescheduled rally for tomorrow would be held in Gazipur at any cost. “We will hold the rally in Gazipur on Saturday at any cost. All preparations have already been finished to make the rally a success,” Fakhrul told media at a press conference held at Khaleda’s Gulshan office this morning. “The government will be held responsible if our rally is hindered anyhow and the country’s prevailing situation will be jeopardised if it is done,” he warned. “The government has unleashed its arrest spree against BNP men when we have started enforcing anti-government campaign,” he said adding that its consequences will not be good at all.
AGENCY, THE DAILY STAR