At least four people were detained this afternoon as police dispersed a group of protesting job seekers who took position at the Shahbagh intersection in Dhaka since yesterday.
The protesters were continuing a blockade at the spot, one of the busiest intersections of the capital, demanding extension of age limit to 35 from 30 for entering government jobs. Vehicular movement become normal after law enforcers move the protesters off the roads in the area near to the Dhaka University campus.
The detained people will be questioned, Bangla daily Prothom Alo reports quoting HM Azimul Huq, assistant deputy commissioner of Ramna Police Station. The protesters did not pay any heed to us as they were told to demonstrate following the rules, the police official said adding that no one will be allowed to create any public suffering, Prothom Alo reports.
Meanwhile, the protesters will announce their next course of action soon, Sanjoy Das, convener of Bangladesh Sadharan Chhatra Parishad, told journalists. Five of the joint conveners of the Parishad were detained by the police, he claimed.
Commuters suffered greatly since the rush hours today as the intersection was blocked by the demonstrators. No busses were on the roads as transport workers enforced a 48-hour strike from today.
Yesterday, some 500 students from different colleges and universities, under the banner of the Parishad, joined the protest and formed a large circle to block the roundabout around 12:30pm.
A number of demonstrators sat in the middle of the road and chanted slogans in support of the demand. They remained in the street throughout the night. No vehicle could pass through the area during the protest, causing suffering to people. Many were stuck in long tailbacks on adjacent roads. People were seen walking to their destinations.
What are the job seekers' demands?
The Chhatra Parishad said they have been staging demonstrations since 2012 to press home the demand. Several lawmakers extended their support to the demand, but it was yet to be met.
In June this year, a parliamentary committee on the public administration ministry had recommended extending the age limit to 35 for entering civil service. It again made the same recommendation on September 10.
Currently, the age limit for entering public service is 30 and the retirement age 59. Demonstrators yesterday sought Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's intervention in the issue to implement the recommendation on increasing the age limit.
Source: Daily Star