Less traffic on streets as 48-hour blockade begins

A glimpse of Bijoy Sarani signal at 8:00 am.
Prothom Alo

A relatively lower traffic movement has been witnessed in Dhaka this morning as the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) called for another 48-hour blockade across the country since 6:00 am on Sunday.

Public presence increased on the streets compared to the previous spells of blockade, but it still remained far lower than the usual rush on a Sunday morning.

During a trip from Mirpur-10 to Karwan Bazar around 8:00 am, this correspondent had to stop only at the Bijoy Sarani signal for less than a minute, a scenario in stark contrast to the usual traffic congestion on Sunday mornings. The entire bike trip took around 15 minutes.

The crowd of office-goers at bus stops was also significantly lower, with fewer public buses facing no usual pressure of passengers.

Members of law enforcement agencies were seen in a cautious position at different points, including Mirpur-10, Kazipara, Shewrapara, Bijoy Sarani, and Firmgate areas. However, there was no presence of BNP members on the streets.

The number of vehicles was lower on the streets.
Prothom Alo

The BNP declared to enforce the nationwide blockade until 6:00 am on Tuesday, to press home their demand for resignation of prime minister Sheikh Hasina and introduction of a neutral election-time government.

On the eve of the 48-hour blockade, six buses were torched at Motijheel, Gabtoli, Gulistan, Jatrabari, Taltala, and Kafrul in Dhaka on Saturday night. With this, the number of vehicles torched in Dhaka from 28 October to 11 November rose to 71.

A passenger sustained burn injuries in the fire incident at Jatrabari.

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Besides, there were sporadic incidents of burning vehicles across the country. The total number of torched vehicles across the country, including those in Dhaka, stands at 90, according to Prothom Alo correspondents, police, and fire service sources.

BNP said they extended their blockade programme as the election commission is going to announce the election schedule at the end of this week.

They, along with other opposition parties, are also planning to intensify their movement once the election schedule is announced.