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Tuesday, 30 July, 2002, 12:28 GMT 13:28 UK
Bangladesh hit by student strike
Police action against protest
The strike was over allegations of police brutality

A general strike called by several student groups has shut down much of Bangladesh.

Students sitting down with placard
Students want the resignation of the vice chancellor
The students are protesting against alleged police brutality during a raid on a women's dormitory at Dhaka University last week.

Schools and businesses are closed and transport is disrupted across Bangladesh as a result of the strike which began at 0600 local time.

The strike comes during a high-profile visit to the country by Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf.

Security measures

Thousands of police and paramilitary troops deployed in the streets of Dhaka are on maximum alert to prevent students from picketing and organising any protest.

In the capital Dhaka, the streets are nearly empty, with only a few rickshaws and scooters around under a heavy police presence.

At the Dhaka University campus, the stand off between the protesting students and the police is now into its seventh day.

Nearly 100 students are continuing their hunger strike in front of a mausoleum demanding the resignation of the vice chancellor Anwarullah Chowdhury, whom they hold responsible for the police action.

On Monday, nearly 100 students and several journalists and teachers were injured during a violent clash with police.

Bangladesh Home Minister Altaf Hossain Chowdhury has voiced regret over the police action and ordered the suspension of three police officials involved.

Analysts say the student protest, now spreading to other parts of the country, has considerably embarrassed the government during the high-profile visit of Pakistan's President General Pervez Musharraf.

However, student leaders said their action was not aimed at his visit and the strike is not reported to have disrupted it.

See also:

29 Jul 02 | South Asia
24 Jul 02 | South Asia
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10 Oct 01 | South Asia
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