Ruling party men beat 2 more journos in Bangladesh's Rangamati district

RANGAMATI (The Daily Star/ANN) - The incident took place in Chittagong Hill Tracts district of Rangamati.

A day after assaulting a journalist, Chhatra League men yesterday beat up two more reporters in Rangamati, Bangladesh, police and witnesses said.

The two are Muhammad Kamal Uddin, district correspondent of Dainik Purbodesh, and Saiful Bin Hasan, staff reporter of local daily Parbattya Chattagram, are taking treatment at Rangamati General Hospital, hospital sources said.

The incident happened around 4:00pm when the two were taking photos of agitating BCL men in the town's Banorupa area. Activists of the pro-Awami League student body beat the two with sticks and punched as well as kicked them, said Sushil Proshad Chakma, president of Reporters Unity of Rangamati.

The BCL was observing a dawn-to-dusk hartal in the town yesterday, protesting an attack on a fellow activist by some unidentified people and the subsequent clash with police on Monday, said Prokash Chakma, general secretary of Rangamati BCL.

At least 35 people, including seven policemen, were injured in that clash between police and the BCL activists, said Satyajit Barua, officer-in-charge of Rangamati Police Station.

The clash broke out when police tried to disperse the BCL men who blocked the road in Banorupa and Happy Mor. They also vandalised several vehicles, including a magistrate's car, the OC added.

At one point, they attacked Satrong Chakma, staff reporter of daily Samakal and district correspondent of Ekushey TV, when he was taking photos of their protest, said the victim and witnesses.

He is taking treatment at Rangamati General Hospital with head injuries, hospital sources said.

Contacted, the district BCL general secretary admitted both the attacks.

“I personally visited the three in the hospital and offered my apology for this unexpected incident,” he said.

All the three journalists confirmed his visit.

The BCL expelled Muhammad Hanif, organising secretary of its Rangamati municipal unit, over yesterday's attack, said Prokash, general secretary of the district BCL.

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