Some 2,000 students have staged demonstrations at Shahbagh intersection in Dhaka, demanding that the existing quota system in government services be reformed.
Students, mostly from Dhaka University and from other universities and colleges, staged their sit-in protest in front of Shahbagh’s Central Public Library around 11am on Sunday to press home their five-point demand.
Their demands include keeping 10% quota for freedom fighters and others, and the rest 90% on merit basis for government jobs.
They also demanded that the existing quota system in various government recruitment processes, including Bangladesh Civil Service (BCS) examination, be reviewed.
Currently, 44% are recruited on merit and the remaining 56% on privilege allocated under various quotas.
The students, under the banner of Sadharan Chhatra Odhikar Sangrakkan Parishad, have been staging such protests across Bangladesh.
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The students also brought out a procession and marched towards Raju Sculpture near TSC area of Dhaka University.
Later, Convener of the movement Hasan Al Mamun, Vice President of Bangladesh Chhatra League Haji Muhammad Mohsin Hall of DU, announced the next course of the movement.
They said they will stage sit-in events at all Deputy Commissioner’s Offices across Bangladesh and stage demonstrations in front of the public administration ministry in Dhaka on March 14.
Their other demands include recruitment of meritorious students in government jobs if eligible candidates are not found under the quota system, stopping special recruitment under a fixed quota, uniform age limit in government recruitment process and scope for switching jobs under quota facility to a different candidate only on the basis of merit.
Earlier in the day, the demonstrators observed one minute of silence over the attack on the prominent writer Professor Dr Md Zafar Iqbal, before beginning their protest.
RU students demand quota reform
Students of Rajshahi University (RU) continued their human chain event yesterday demanding a reform of the quota system in government service recruitment.
For the fourth consecutive day, around 1,000 students stood on the University Paris Road demanding that the 56% quota in Bangladesh Civil Service (BCS) recruitment exam be cut down to 10%.
The other demands put forth by the RU students are: recruiting candidates based on their merits, not recruiting more than one member from the same family, not allowing special recruitment based on quota, and implementing uniform age limit for everyone.
Later in the day, the protesters brought out a silent march on the campus.