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Dhaka Tribune

Violence flares up again in Sitakunda

Update : 20 Nov 2013, 08:06 PM

Jamaat-Shibir men again rampaged through Sitakunda on the Dhaka-Chittagong highway on Wednesday afternoon after the police recovered a bullet-hit body, claimed to be a missing local Jamaat leader.

At least 17 houses, including the one of Barabkunda union parshad chairman and local Awami League leader Sadakat Ullah, and four vehicles were torched during the violence.

Protesters also vandalised at least 20 vehicles on the highway, said police and local sources.

Clashes between Jamaat-Shibir men and law enforcing agencies at the upazila’s Barabkunda area resulted in suspension of vehicular movement on the highway from 3:30pm for hours, creating 30-km tailback on both sides, said Syed Zakir Hossain, officer-in-charge (OC) Baro Awalia Highway Police Outpost.

The highway could not be cleared for traffic until filing of this report at about 7:00pm.

Earlier, police recovered a body of a male with bullet wounds in the head and mouth from the upazila’s Sheikhpara area at around 1:30pm.

Police could not identify the body immediately, but local Jamaat men claimed it was of local Jamaat leader Aminul Islam, who had been missing since Sunday night.

Later, police ascertained that it was Aminul’s body and sent it to Chittagong Medical College Hospital morgue for autopsy, said Mohammad Shahidullah, additional superintendent of police (north) in Chittagong.

Jamaat-e-Islami, Chittagong region in a statement signed by Mohammad Ullah, publicity secretary of the city unit of Jamaat, claimed that Aminul was nabbed by some plainclothes people Sunday night from Chowddagram of Comilla district when he was returning to Sitakunda along with his family members.

Aminul had been missing since then and his dead body was found on Wednesday, said the statement, blaming upazila chairman and local Awami League leader Abdullah Al Baker Ullah for the killing.

Aminul was general secretary of Barabkunda union unit of Jamaat.

Sitakunda Police refused to lodge any case when Aminul’s family approached them, Jamaat alleged.

Refuting the allegation, the additional superintendent of police (north) Shahidullah told Dhaka Tribune that no law enforcement agency arrested Aminul Sunday night. Police is looking into the matter, he said.

After hearing the news, several hundred Jamaat-Shibir men set fire to the houses of local Awami League leader Sadakat Ullah and his associates at around 3:00pm, said Abdullah Al Baker, upazila chairman.

17 houses and a private were burnt, said Jashim Uddin, deputy assistant director of Fire Service and Civil Defense Headquarters in Chittagong.

The Jamaat-Shibir men put barricades on the highway at Barabkunda area from 3:30pm and rampaged on the highway, said OC SM Badiujjaman of Sitakunda Police Station.

They blasted some crude bombs while police opened tear shells and rubber bullets to disperse them, he said.

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