Dhaka: Day running on Saturday elements of the Bangladeshi capital ground to a halt for the seventh, as a large number of students staged protests calling for improvements to road safety after two teenagers were killed by way of a speeding bus.
Authorities have pleaded with demonstrators to call off protests which have nearly paralysed Dhaka and prompted foreign embassies to issue travel alerts.
Thousands of students wearing school uniforms defied rain to block major intersections in the administrative centre from Saturday morning.
Teens as early as 13 were seen on Dhaka’s notoriously clogged roadways checking whether cars and buses had valid licenses and were in a roadworthy condition.
“We wish justice,” the students chanted because they gathered in a few of Dhaka’s main public squares.
“We won’t leave the roads until our demands are met. We wish safe roads and safe drivers,” said protester Al Miran.
Anger has simmered since a speeding bus killed a woman and boy last weekend.}
Bangladesh’s transport sector is widely viewed as corrupt, dangerous and unregulated, so when news of the teenagers’ deaths became a catalyst for public anger after spreading rapidly on social media marketing.
An insensitive comment by Shajahan Khan, a national government minister with ties to powerful transport unions, poured oil onto the fire.
Khan questioned why there is this uproar on the two Dhaka children but no reaction when 33 individuals were killed within an Indian bus crash your day before.
There have already been widespread social media marketing demands for the minister’s resignation despite his subsequent apology.
The education ministry turn off high schools on Thursday in order to quell unrest, promising students their demands for road safety reforms will be considered.
Several powerful ministers pleaded with students to come back with their classes, amid worries the unprecedented teen outrage could become widespread anti-government protests before general elections due later this season.
The government of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has ruled Bangladesh since 2009, however in recent months it’s been shaken by mass protests demanding a finish to a decades-old system of discriminatory civil service recruitment.
Dhaka is suffering from daily gridlock but congestion has been exacerbated by blockades create over the city since Sunday.
The embassies of the united states and Australia warned of significant delays and disruptions due to the protests across Dhaka and elsewhere in the united kingdom.