A tea vendor was killed and at least 10 people injured as police opened fire on jute mill workers, who took to the streets demanding unpaid wages at Biral in Dinajpur on Wednesday.
The dead is Surat Ali, a man in his thirties, was a resident of village Hosna at the upazila.
Witnesses said that the workers of Rupali Bangla Jute Mills Limited, owned by Biral upazila Awami League president Abdul Latif, began protests in the afternoon as the mill authorities shut down the factory without prior notice keeping wages unpaid for three weeks.
Later, the authorities sat in a meeting with the workers to resolve the dispute and, as they failed to reach a solution, the workers stared their agitation again and at one stage began vandalising the mill building’s glasses in the evening, they said.
They said that the police went to the spot and tried to calm the workers.
As they failed, they stated beating the workers to disperse them, and later opened fire on the workers.
Vendor Surat and at least 10 others got shot during the firing.
Biral Police Station officer-in-charge Sheikh Nasim Habib claimed that they charged batons, lobbed three teargas shells and fired 12 rubber bullets when the workers attacked the police.
He said that Surat was taken to Biral Upazila Health Complex where on-duty doctors declared him dead.
He claimed that three policemen were also injured during the attack of the workers.
Nasim Habib said that sub-inspector Abdul Quader on Thursday filed a case with the police station accusing 1,000 to 1,100 people for assaulting police, hindering them in discharging their duties and killing Surat.
Dinajpur superintendent of police Anwar Hossain said that they formed a three-member probe committee headed by district special branch’s additional SP Sachin Chakma and the committee was asked to submit report within seven working days.
Left Democratic Alliance, in a statement, on Friday condemned the police action and demanded free treatment for all the injured workers. (Source: New Age)