Leaders and workers of the ruling Awami League took to the streets on Saturday, sitting in alleys, main roads and street junctions, as they prepared for preventing "any untoward situation created by the BNP" centring its rally at Golapbagh in the capital.
Party activists set up fabricated structures in their wards, boasting banners that asked for protests to be made against the "BNP-Jamaat nexus' anti-national conspiracy and anarchy".
Bamboo and wooden sticks were also seen in the hands of the leaders and workers at some places.
It has also been alleged that Dhaka University Chhatra League activists checked mobile phones of people at the Nilkhet intersection and even handed over some to the police.
Awami League presidium member Mofazzal Hossain Chowdhury Maya told the media that their leader's order was to protect people's lives and property, to work as a watchman in neighbourhoods.
He said the Awami League, Chhatra League, Jubo League, Mahila League and Sramik League are standing guard in every alley, street and intersection in Dhaka city.
Meanwhile, as seven BNP lawmakers at their rally announced resignation from parliament, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader yesterday said parliament won't be paralysed if seven BNP MPs left.
"We have many lawmakers. Parliament has more than 45 opposition MPs too. So, there is no reason to think that the Jatiya Sangsad will be paralysed if the seven of you go," he said while addressing a public meeting organised by the local Awami League at the Radio Colony ground in Savar.
Referring to foreign nations, he said, "There is no use in banning anything…we can also give bans. We don't poke our noses into other people's business; so, why worry about us so much?"
He said, "I think my foreign friends now understand the reality better."
On BNP, Quader said they had recently appointed a lobbyist.
"And then didn't the ban on RAB come? Everything is out in the open, it has all been leaked."
Mentioning the name of British lawyer Toby Cadman, the Awami League general secretary said, "He himself said in an interview to an international media that he lobbied the United Kingdom and the United States to ban Bangladesh police and RAB. The United States listened, but the UK didn't.
"How much money does Tarique Rahman have? Conspiracies and propaganda against Bangladesh are being done through lobbyists. In the morning, news came from the US. It is good news for Bangladesh, but bad news for the conspirators. The US has sanctioned 40 people from nine countries, and Bangladesh is not on this list."
He said Khaleda Zia, who has embezzled orphan's money, is staying in her house today due to the generosity of Sheikh Hasina.
Mentioning that the BNP Chairperson was supposed to join the 10 December rally, Quader said, "So, where is Khaleda Zia? The day [10 December] is almost over."
District Awami League General Secretary Paniruzzaman Tarun told The Business Standard that this public meeting was not a repeat of the BNP's divisional meeting.
"We want to prove through today's meeting that the people of Bangladesh have confidence in Sheikh Hasina's leadership, the country is moving forward, and the country's development is continuing. Besides, the anarchic situation that BNP-Jamaat has created in the country, we want to prove that the people of the country have rejected the BNP and have confidence in Sheikh Hasina's leadership by attending this rally."
AL men in action
Leaders and activists under the leadership of Sheikh Mohammad Hossain, councillor of Ward-34 of Dhaka North City Corporation, took up positions at the Dhanmondi political office of the Awami League president.
Leaders and activists were seen standing guard on the side of the main road under the leadership of Jahangir Alam, commissioner of Ward-37 of the Dhaka North City Corporation.
Workers were also seen installing TVs in the fabricated structures to keep an eye on BNP's rally.
A similar picture was seen after visiting different areas including Badda, Rampura, Malibagh, Segunbagicha, Dhanmondi, Motijheel, Mohammadpur.
Two pandals were seen next to Gabtoli Bus Terminal, both of which were named Bijoy Mancho.
Jubo League General Secretary Mainul Hossain Khan stopped at these pandals in a motorcycle procession with hundreds of leaders and workers.