Zero tolerance to violence

Govt plans to keep highways free for smooth export-import business

Sagar Biswas :
The government has decided to show ‘zero tolerance’ to the post-poll violence which was unleashed by opposition BNP and Jamaat-e-Islami across the country. It has already directed the law enforcement agencies to deal with the troublemakers with an iron hand. Official sources said that the government has been apprehending that deadly violence might further spread, especially when the opposition has announced new agitation programmes including hartal and blockade from Monday dawn rejecting the polls. The government wants to keep smooth movement on highways, particularly on Dhaka-Chittagong highway, for uninterrupted export – import business through Chittagong Port. Besides, it wants to keep the highways free from any act of sabotage. It is also serious about keeping the land ports, particularly Benapole-Petropole border operational without any hindrance. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday issued directives to officials concerned to tackle any untoward situation and protect life and property of the people. Senior officials of law enforcement agencies led by Inspector General of Police Hassan Mahmud Khandaker held a meeting last night to work out an action plan to resist post-poll violence, sources said. Already, securities at key-point installations have been beefed up throughout the country after nationwide mayhem centering the election in the last few days. Especially, the security measures in the city’s diplomatic area have been strengthened. When contacted, Commander Habibur Rahman, Director of Legal and Media Wing, Rapid Action Battalion [RAB], told The New Nation: “We have already strengthened security measurers in and outside the capital to resist post-poll violence. The RAB personnel will provide highest security on highways, particularly on Dhaka-Chittagong highway, for vehicles carrying export goods.” He said: “Our intelligence wing has identified some ‘highly violence’ prone areas and already increased surveillance to thwart any sabotage and anarchy. Some disturbing areas, including Satkhira, Cox’s Bazar, Feni, Sitakunda, Gaibandha, Lalmonirhat have been brought under close surveillance of security forces.” Apart from the law enforcers, the Awami League and its associated bodies have also been asked to remain active on the streets to assist the law enforcers in thwarting violence. “The government won’t show any tolerance to act of sabotage and anarchy. However, the Awami League is interested to reach a consensus with BNP even before completion of 10th parliament if they leave the path of violence. Otherwise, the law enforcers will deal with the Jamaat-Shibir anarchists with iron hands,” said Forest and Environment Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud yesterday. Echoing the same, State Minister for Law, Advocate Quamrul Islam said: ” The main task of the new government will be to eliminate terrorism, militancy and sabotage. The government will take stringent measures to keep peace in country and protect the public life and property.”

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