'We have seen that the driver of a minster had no driving licence, and the vehicles of MPs and law enforcement officials also had no valid papers. This is shameful for the nation'
BNP on Friday claimed bus owners and workers had suspended long-haul bus services at the behest of government ministers, while student protests for safer roads continued in Dhaka.
"Public transport services have been stopped under the directives of ministers, in order to sidetrack people from the students' justified protest," BNP Senior Joint Secretary General Ruhul Kabir Rizvi said as quoted by UNB.
The BNP leader made the allegation while addressing a press conference at BNP's Naya Paltan central office.
Bus owners suspended long-route bus services in various districts on Friday morning, protesting “vandalism” during the ongoing demonstrations over the deaths of two students in Sunday’s bus accident on Airport Road.
Regarding Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader’s comment that transport owners had suspended bus services on security grounds, Rizvi said protesting students were not seen to be obstructing vehicles anywhere during the demonstrations.
“Students are checking the licenses of drivers and vehicles, and helping traffic flow in a disciplined way. We have seen that the driver of a minster had no driving licence, and the vehicles of MPs and law enforcement officials also had no valid papers. This is shameful for the nation," the BNP Senior Joint Secretary General added.
On Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan's remark that there may be “acts of sabotage” during the student movement, Rizvi said: “This is an indication of the subversive acts to be carried out by the government, as it did so during past democratic movements.”
Rizvi also blamed police and ruling party activists over the attacks on students in various areas of Dhaka, including Mirpur.
He demanded the government take steps to stop the repression of the demonstrating students.
Speaking at separate event, BNP Vice Chairman Abdullah Al Noman demanded that the Bangladesh president implement an ordinance to ensure safe roads.
"If the government accepts the students' nine-point demanda, it can take steps to implement an ordinance by the president for road safety," he said at a human chain organized by Bangladesh Jatiya Manabadhikar Parishad in front of the National Press Club.
Noman added that the home minister’s call for students to return to their homes was a threat.
"I think the government should take the right decision and resolve the problem peacefully, instead of threatening students," he said.