PV Desk : After an attack on her convoy in Feni, BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia reached here safely on Saturday night as she has embarked on a four-day tour of Cox’s Bazar to visit the Rohingyas who have taken shelter there in the face of persecution in their own country, Myanmar.
After a halt at Feni circuit house, Khaleda started the journey again for the port city at 6:52 pm and reached Chittagong circuit house around 10:50 pm.
It took her nearly two hours to reach the circuit house from Chittagong city gate as BNP leaders and activists staged a huge showdown in the city.
Earlier, the convoy of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, came under attack at Mohammad Ali Bazar near Feni district town.
When Khaleda Zia’s vehicle crossed the bazaar around 4:45pm, a group of unruly people attacked the vehicles of her convoy, witnesses said.
They damaged a number of vehicles, including microbuses of Channel I, DBC, Ekattor and Baishakhi televisions and beat several journalists and leaders and activists of BNP who were going with Khaleda Zia.
BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi blamed the ruling party cadres for the attack and alleged that they did it at the behest of the government.
“We’ve sought their cooperation and necessary security measures to make our chairperson journey peaceful but they let loose their activists to attack
journalists and our leaders and activists,” he said.
The BNP leader also alleged that the ruling party men had attacked their party activists at different points in Comilla earlier.
He said ruling party men also attacked some vehicles carrying their party leaders, including the vice-chairman Barkatullah Bulu and microbus of private TV channel NTV in Mirsarai.
The BNP chairperson left her Gulshan residence at 10:45am.
She will stay overnight at Chittagong circuit house on Saturday, and again start her journey for Cox’s Bazar around 11 am on Sunday.
Reaching Cox’s Bazar around 5pm, she will stay overnight at the circuit house there on Sunday.
Khaleda will go to Ukhia on Monday noon to visit the Rohingya camps at Balukhali, Boalmara and Jamtoli and return to Chittagong in the evening.
She will stay overnight at the Chittagong circuit house on Monday and finally return to Dhaka on Tuesday.
As the national election is getting closer, BNP’s nomination aspirants will try to draw Khaleda’s attention with big showdowns at different points in their respective areas from Gulshan to Cox’s Bazar demonstrating their popularity and strength.
Talking to reporters, just before starting the journey, BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said their chairperson is going to Cox’s Bazar for the cause of humanity and to stand beside the helpless Rohingyas
He said Khaleda will go to Ukhia camps on Monday and distribute relief materials among 10,000 Rohingya families at Balukhali, Boalmara and Jamtoli camps.
Fakhrul said, “They sought all-out cooperation from the government to make the visit a success. The Inspector General of Police (IGP) assured us of ensuring necessary security measures and cooperation during our chairperson’s visit”.
Khaleda who returned home from the UK on October 18 after over a three-month stay there is going to Cox’s Bazar as part of her party standing committee members’ decision.
Khaleda last visited Cox’s Bazar in 2012 after attacks on Buddhists at Ramu.