Three dead as train derails in Bangladesh unrest

Published December 4, 2013
Bangladeshi commuters travel on a train during an ongoing blockade organised by Bangladesh Nationalist Party supporters in Dhaka. Opposition activists derailed a train in Bangladesh Wednesday, killing three people, as part of a campaign against elections due to be held next month. — Photo by AFP
Bangladeshi commuters travel on a train during an ongoing blockade organised by Bangladesh Nationalist Party supporters in Dhaka. Opposition activists derailed a train in Bangladesh Wednesday, killing three people, as part of a campaign against elections due to be held next month. — Photo by AFP

DHAKA: Opposition activists derailed a train in Bangladesh Wednesday, killing three people, as part of a campaign against elections due to be held next month, officials said.

Three coaches and the engine of the express train toppled off the tracks in the northern district of Gaibandha, trapping dozens of passengers, police and railway spokesmen said.

“Among the trapped passengers, three have died, including two men and a woman,” Gaibandha police chief Sajid Hossain told AFP.

Hossain said five passengers who had been rescued from one of the derailed coaches were in a serious condition and others had suffered minor injuries.

The private television network Somoy put the number of injured at 40.

Mahbubul Alam Bakshi, the head of Bangladesh Railway's northern region, said protesters had deliberately removed fishplates that linked the rail tracks, denouncing the derailing as “an act of sabotage”.

More than 60 people have been killed since late October when the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) began a mass campaign of action to force Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to stand down ahead of the January 5 elections in favour of a caretaker government.

The BNP has refused to field candidates in the contest which electoral officials have said could be postponed.

Police chief Hossain said Wednesday's derailing was believed to be the work of opposition activists protesting plans to hold next month's election, adding that two had been arrested at the scene.

Bakshi said that the pair were both followers of Jamaat-e-Islami, an Islamist movement which is banned from taking part in the election and is allied to the BNP.

Opinion

Editorial

Crime against humanity
Updated 03 Dec 2021

Crime against humanity

The government has yet to fulfil its long-standing pledge to criminalise enforced disappearances.
03 Dec 2021

Revised valuations

THE revised property valuations notified by the FBR for 40 cities for the purpose of collecting federal taxes —...
03 Dec 2021

PWD await rights

ON the International Day of Disabled Persons, it is important to take stock of how far Pakistan has come in ensuring...
02 Dec 2021

Funding for polls

THE PTI government’s autocratic mentality is again on full display, even as it feigns adherence to the law....
02 Dec 2021

Soaring prices

PRICES are surging. And they are increasing at a much faster pace than anticipated, burdening millions of...
Ali Wazir’s bail
Updated 02 Dec 2021

Ali Wazir’s bail

IT has been a long time coming, but MNA and Pashtun Tahaffuz Movement leader Ali Wazir has finally been granted bail...