50 hurt in Patuakhali blockader-cop clash

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At least 50 people including five policemen were injured as the activists of opposition combine clashed with law enforcers in Patuakhali Sadar area today, on the third day of their 71-hour countrywide blockade.

The clash that erupted around 9:30am continued with the incidents of chases and counter-chases when this report was filed around 10:00am, reports our correspondent from the scene.

The BNP-led 18-party opposition combine called the countrywide blockade of rail, roads and waterways in protest at the announcement of the schedule for the 10th parliamentary election.

Initially, the blockade was a 48-hour one. But the opposition alliance yesterday extended it by 23 hours in two phases — first by 12 hours in the afternoon and then by 11 hours late at night — protesting the “killing of its activists and government oppression”. The blockade will now end at 5:00am tomorrow.

Among the injured are: Mohammad Abdur Rauf, secretary of Patuakhali district BNP unit, and Jesmin Zafar, general secretary of district Jatiyatabadi Mahila Dal, women wing of the BNP.

The activists of BNP and its key alley Jamaat-e-Islami blocked the Patuakhali-Barisal highway in Telekhali area of the upazila when police resisted them, the clash ensued.

During the clash, the opposition men hurled brick chips on the police and Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) while the law enforcers retaliated with around 50 rounds of rubber bullets.

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