Vol. 5 Num 479 Fri. September 30, 2005  
Front Page

JCD factions rock RU with gunfight
10 injured; VC's residence hemmed in over leader's arrest

At least 10 people including a photojournalist were injured as two armed factions of the Jatiyatabadi Chatra Dal (JCD), student front of the ruling BNP, engaged in a gunfight at Rajshahi University (RU) yesterday.

The clash began in the afternoon when 50 armed cadres of the RU JCD Convenor Nuruzzaman Likhon's group, led by Miran and Shafin, attacked the Joint Convenor Aslam Reza's group at Sher-e Bangla Hall, over establishing supremacy in the committee of the organisation.

Both the groups blasted nearly 15 crackers at the hall gate and exchanged a number of gunshots during the half-an-hour long fight.

The police stood by while the clash was going on. Later, when the gunshots stopped, they charged 10 teargas shells and blank fired to disperse the groups.

However, Faizur Rahman, officer-in-charge of the Motihar Police Station said that they used six teargas shells and one bullet during the clashes.

About their silent role during the clashes, West Regional Deputy Commissioner of Rajshahi Metropolitan Police (RMP) Lokman Hakim said that police could not take action inside the campus without the order of the authority.

However, RU Vice chancellor Prof Altaf Hossain said that the authority asked all concerned to take action against responsible persons.

The clashes occurred when State Minister for Home Affairs Lutfozzaman Babar, was attending a Rajshahi divisional meeting on the law and order.

RU doctors rushed to the Sher-e Bangla and Abdul Latif halls where the groups took shelter after police action and treated the injured.

Earlier in the morning, Aslam groups' Gorki and Masudur Rahman Rana staged a showdown with open firearms and looked for their opponents on the campus. Failing to find any of them, the Gorki-Rana group went to Sher-e-Bangla hall.

Later, police escorted the Miran-Shafin group, who rounded the campus with open arms and attacked the Sher-e -Bangla hall.

Among the injured, RU JCD convening committee member Adil Shahriar Gorki received a bullet wound while JCD activists Nazmul, Shafiqul, Atiqur and Manik received wounds from splinters. The police arrested Gorki when he sneaked out of the hall for treatment in hospital. The supporters of Gorki immediately laid siege to the residence of the VC, threatening to cripple the university if their injured leader was not released.

A photojournalist, Nazrul Islam Zulu of the daily Jugantor, was attacked when he was snapping armed JCD cadres in action in front of police. JCD men led by Rumel, Miran and Shafin beat him mercilessly with iron rods while police looked on at 10 yards off the scene.

Journalists staged an immediate protest of the attack, taking out a procession.