Vol. 5 Num 87 Sun. August 22, 2004  
Front Page

Staring death in the face

There may come a moment when you find yourself not far away from death and The Daily Star photojournalist Anisur Rahman just found himself standing in the middle of a carnage that took place at the Bangabandhu Avenue yesterday afternoon.

The scene resembled something out of a war movie. Bloody bodies littered everywhere and there were cries of pain and mayhem. Yet again the nation had been rocked by bombs and this time it took place during a meeting organised by Awami League to protest against a wave of blasts around the country.

"I was standing beside the truck from where Sheikh Hasina (AL

president) was addressing. She was about to conclude her speech when all hell broke loose. I heard an explosion and immediately felt something on my foot. I was about to kick it away when I noticed it was a blood stained leg of a bystander," recalled Anis about the mayhem.

"I was standing with the women Awami League leaders and when I looked around I saw a bulky lady staring blankly upwards after both her legs had been blown off. I took two snaps before realizing it was time to run for safety," Anis went on.

"While I started running I heard another explosion somewhere and finally managed to wrap myself up with scattered cloth of a footpath shop. I heard about six to seven more blasts and it all seemed to have happened in two minutes," said Anis while narrating the horror show after returning to the office with his trouser and shirt still covered in blood.

"I somehow sensed it was time to get up so I walked to the truck used as a mobile dais. I saw two to three hundred people lying near it. Among them I recognized one person who was one of the bodyguards of Sheikh Hasina.

"He was lying motionless but only 10 to 15 minutes earlier I remember him telling me that 'please don't get on the truck because it's already crowded".

Two men sit by an injured knowing not what to do (top), rescuers carry an wounded woman to hospital (bottom-left) and a woman smeared in blood is taken away.. PHOTO: STAR