A march protesting an under-implementation coal-based power plant at Rampal near the Sundarbans was foiled in Dhaka today.
Police lobbed teargas shells and charged baton to disperse the protesters as the march towards Prime Minister’s Office reached a point in front of Intercontinental Hotel near Shahbagh crossing in the city.
Around 50 people were reportedly injured in the incident – 12 were taken to Dhaka Medical College Hospital and Dhaka University medical centre. Police picked up 8-10 people from the spot.
The National Committee to Protect Oil-Gas-Natural Resources and Power-Port organised the march, protesting the signing of a contract for implementing the Rampal power plant project near the Sundarbans.
They brought out a procession from the National Press Club at around 12:15 and, as they reached Shahbagh crossing and faced a police barricade, it triggered a scuffle with police.
The protesters moved on keeping the barricade aside. As they reached close to the hotel, police lobbed tear shells and charged baton.
Bangladesh-India Friendship Power Company Ltd (BIFPCL), a joint venture company of Bangladesh and India, signed a contract on July 12 with Indian contractor BHEL to set up the plant.
The committee had been protesting against the plant on apprehension that the coal based plant would destroy the world’s largest mangrove forest since adopting the project.