February 18, 2013

Shahbag Protest in a Nutshell

The Shahbag protest began on Tuesday, February 5th in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in response to the court not giving a war criminal of Bangladesh, Abdul Quader Mollah, the capital punishment. Mollah has been charged with the participation in atrocities during the Liberation War of 1971, which includes the mass murder in Mirpur. He was proven guilty in 5 out of the six charges brought against him. In couple of hours of the verdict, mass started to develop because many were expecting the capital punishment.

The place where the protest started has been renamed Projonmo Chottor because the new generation has been credited for the protest. Thousands are still protesting until today as they wait for the court to give Mollah and the other rajakars (war criminals) the capital punishment.

Tuesday, February 5th
Protest organized by Blogger and Online Activists Network (BOAN). Protesters started to draw cartoons, murals as well as hang effigies. According to Bloomberg.com, at least 14,000 joined the protest on the first day.

Wednesday, February 6th
Rumors spread that the protest is mutual.

Thursday, February 7th
Sit-in protest started with the demonstrators singing the national anthem from 8 am.

Friday, February 8th
A mass rally is done with hundreds and thousands of people joining the cause. Many poets and writers started to join the protest, giving their speeches.

Tuesday, February 12th
A 3-minute silence is called for from 4:00 pm to 4:03 pm. Thousands of vehicles stopped. People emerged to the streets and formed chains. Even a cricket game going on in the Sher-e-bangla Stadium was stopped for 3 minutes. Shibir, the student organization of Jamaat-e-Islami start rampaging by blowing and shooting at the police.

Friday, February 15th
A blogger and activist, Ahmed Rajib Haider is hacked to death by the Jamaat-e-Islami.

Monday, February 18th
Jamaat-e-Islami calls for a nationwide shutdown. The nation's Board Guards were immediately deployed to stop the Jamaat-e-Islami from disrupting continuing with the shutdown which didn't do much for the nation's daily life as many did not follow the shutdown at all. The president has also approved the amendment to the International Crimes Tribunal which calls for parties to be charged for war crimes (as well as individuals). It also allows equal opportunity for appeals against verdicts of war crimes tribunal.

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