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New Market clashes: BNP leader Makbul arrested

An opposition BNP leader has been arrested in connection with the clashes between New Market shopkeepers and Dhaka College students.

The Detective Branch of police arrested Makbul Hossain Sarder from his Dhanmondi residence in the capital on Friday afternoon. He is the former president of New Market Thana BNP and member of Dhaka City South BNP Convening Committee.

“He (Makbul Hossain) has been arrested for instigating the clashes between shopkeepers and students,” said DB’s additional commissioner AKM Hafiz Akhter.

“Makbul is now being questioned at DB’s Minto Road office in the capital,” he said.

Police filed a case on charges of obstructing the duties of police and vandalising shops. Makbul Hossain made No. 1 accused in the case.

Intelligence report reveals that several BNP leaders and activists including Makbul allegedly instigated both the traders and students to spread violence from the beginning of the clashes. Makbul is the owner of two fast food shops — Welcome and Capital. The clashes ensued when the employees of these two fast food shops got involved in clashes.

On Monday midnight, clashes between Dhaka College students and New Market shopkeepers broke out. In sequel to it, there were clashes in New Market area throughout the day on Tuesday which lasted until Wednesday.

Nahid Hossain and Mohammad Morsalin, a delivery man and a shop employee respectively, died receiving multiple head injuries in the clashes. Besides, more than 50 were injured.

Some 15 journalists were also injured while collecting information for making reports on the clashes.

Contacted, DB’s joint commissioner Mahbub Alam said, “We have already found adequate evidence after probing the incident.”

Detectives think that a third party was involved in instigating the clashes.