Thakurgaon Government officials and employees at Debiganj upazila headquarters in Panchagarh began an indefinite work abstention yesterday demanding arrest of some local Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) activists who confined the upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) and project implementation officer (PIO) to their office rooms on January 21. A group of BCL activists confined UNO Abu Jafar and PIO Motiur Rahman over recruitment of staff for a project under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. The ministry is implementing National Nutrition Project (NNP) at Debiganj upazila through Thengamara shabuj Shangha (TMSS), a non-governmental organisation (NGO). A committee headed by the upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) recruited 16 community nutrition organisers and 162 community nutrition promoters through a written test on January 17. Local people and UNO office sources said a group of BCL activists, led by their leaders Swapon and Sohel, came to the UNO office on January 21and hurled abusive language at UNO Abu Jafar for not recruiting their candidates. At one stage, the BCL activists ransacked the UNO office and confined him in his room They then entered the office of Project Implementation Officer (PIO) Motiur Rahman, vandalised the room and assaulted him. The BCL men also locked the door of the office room, keeping the PIO inside. Later police went to the spot, dispersed the BCL men and rescued the UNO and PIO by breaking locks of the doors.
Upazila Nirbahi Officer Abu Jafar filed a case with Debiganj Police Station against 10-BCL men, including Swapon and Sohel, the same day. But police could not arrest the accused as of filing of this report at 5:00pm yesterday. Demanding immediate arrest of the accused, upazila officials and employees started an indefinite work abstention. Upazila Engineer Rabiul Islam and Upazila PIO Motiur Rahaman said they will continue work abstention program until the accused are arrested. An upazila official seeking anonymity said police are not arresting the accused BCL men as they are involved with ruling party politics. Contacted, officer- in-charge of Debiganj Police Station Mominul Islam said drive is on to nab the accused