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Religion-based Parties Hartal ends, agitation Friday

Edit Date:7/13/2011 12:00:00 AM


Twelve like-minded political parties, most of them Islamists, have announced to continue anti-government agitation if the phrase “absolute trust and faith in Almighty Allah" is not restored in the constitution.

The announcement came an hour after the 30-hour countrywide shutdown ended at 12:00noon yesterday. As part of the fresh programmes, the alliance will hold nationwide agitation and a rally in front of the Baitul Mukarram Mosque on Friday, June 15.

Terming the hartal “very successful”, alliance leaders at a press briefing said that the people spontaneously responded to it. Responding to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's earlier comment, Bangladesh Khelafat Andolon Ameer Shah Ahmadullah Ashraf said, “Certainly we've found the Almighty Allah through enforcing the hartal.”

Hasina on Sunday said, “Why don't you find the name of Allah in the word Bismillah? Did you find the word Allah by imposing a 30-hour hartal?” Earlier, the prime minister in parliament said, “The name of Almighty Allah is certainly there in the phrase Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim. Can't they find Almighty Allah there?”

Shah Ahmadullah, however, said that they will announce fresh agitation programme from the Friday rally to press home their demands. He was talking to reporters at the Purana Paltan office of Bangladesh Khelafat Majlish (BKM) under whose leadership the 30-hour shutdown was observed. The hartal was enforced in protest against deletion of absolute trust and faith in Allah from the country's charter through the 15th amendment passed in parliament on June 30.

Islami Andolan Bangladesh, a major component of the alliance, at a separate press conference threatened of nonstop hartal programme demanding restoration of the phrase. Meanwhile, the last six-hour of the hartal was observed slackly as the hartal supporters could not take to the streets due to heavy presence of law enforcers at all key points in the capital.

The law enforcers took position from early morning before the BKM office.

City life was almost normal with a good number of passenger vehicles seen plying the city streets. During the last six-hour hartal yesterday, no untoward incident was reported from any part of the country. It may be mentioned that activists of only BKM and Islami Andolon Bangladesh, another Islamist party of the alliance, were seen on the streets during the first day of the shutdown.

A handful of leaders of Olama Mashaek Parishad and Bangladesh Jatiya Olama Parishad came out on the streets during the two-day hartal. Also yesterday, Jamaat-e-Islami at a press conference announced to hold protest rallies in all divisional headquarters today demanding unconditional release of the party activists arrested during the 48-hour shutdown that ended on Thursday


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