Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) on Sunday (18 September) held a countrywide rally protesting the recent attacks on the political party's activities.
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir joined the programme as the chief guest.
The protest assembly will be held at every district and upazila level including Dhaka metropolis on today. A demonstration will also be held in front of the party's central office in Nayapaltan, said Mirza Fakhrul on Friday (16 September). The BNP secretary general further added that the people of the country want change. "Therefore, the movement of BNP cannot be suppressed even by attacks, cases, arrests, killings and tortures."
In the meantime, BNP leaders and workers participated in a meeting in front of the party's office in the capital's Paltan area organised by Dhaka Metropolitan North and South BNP on Sunday before the protest rally. Sticks and stumps have been seen in the hands of many BNP activists. There is a strong police presence in the vicinity.
Several people including BNP leader Tabith Awal were injured after activists of ruling Awami League attacked a candlelit programme of BNP in the capital's Banani area on Saturday (17 September) night.
The same day, BNP Vice-Chairman Barkat Ullah Bulu and his wife were allegedly attacked by Awami League men on their way from the capital to Noakhali. Former chairman of Bipulasar Union Parishad Sharif Hossain was also injured in the attack at Bipulasar Bazar in Monohorganj of Cumilla.
The condition of the BNP vice-chairman was critical, said the party's media wing member Shairul Kabir Khan.
A Chhatra Dal activist was killed in a clash with police during a BNP rally in Narayanganj on 1 September when the party brought out a procession to commemorate its founding day. On the same day, other BNP rallies and gatherings came under attack in eight districts of the country, including in Manikganj and Sirajganj.
According to the BNP, in August more than 500 leaders and activists were arrested and over 40 cases filed. It has also since claimed that at least 20 of its programmes have been attacked by police and ruling party men.
The ruling AL has maintained that the BNP has been spreading anarchy in the name of their movements.
Jamaat-e-Islami, Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), and Nagarik Oikya have expressed solidarity with the movement. The three parties have announced that they will be in the field with the BNP in the next movement to bring down the Awami League government. At the same time, they have already agreed on the outline that the BNP will announce for the movement.
The leaders of the parties made the announcement in a discussion titled "Overall situation of the country" organised by LDP at National Press Club on Thursday (15 September).