Bangladesh opposition accused of fatal train derailment

Damaged railway line in the Bangladeshi district of Bogra Railway lines across the length and breadth of the country have been vandalised in the course of the disturbances

Related Stories

At least three people have been killed in northern Bangladesh when their train was derailed by opposition activists, railway officials have told the BBC.

Three coaches and the engine of the express train came off the tracks in the district of Gaibandha, trapping dozens of passengers, police and railway spokesmen have said.

The opposition is angry over a decision to hold elections on 5 January.

It has rejected the date and called for a transport blockade.

The opposition wants Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to transfer power to a neutral caretaker government to oversee polls - the practice adopted in previous votes.

Wednesday is the fifth day of an opposition-sponsored countrywide blockade of rail, roads and waterways. The protests are being led by the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and 17 other opposition parties.

"Among the trapped passengers, three have died, including two men and a woman," Gaibandha police chief Sajid Hossain told the AFP news agency.

He said five passengers who were rescued from one of the derailed carriages are in a serious condition while others had suffered minor injuries.

The private television network Somoy estimated that at least 40 people were hurt.

Bangladesh Railway's northern region head Mahbubul Alam Bakshi accused the protesters of deliberately removing "fishplates" - metal bars that are bolted to the ends of two rails to join them together.

He denounced the derailing as "an act of sabotage".

Police say that two members of the Islamist Jamaat-e-Islami were arrested at the scene. The party is allied to the BNP and is banned from taking part in the election.

There has been no comment so far about the incident from the opposition.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Asia stories

RSS

Features

  • Shinji Mikamo's father's watchTime peace

    The story of the watch that survived Hiroshima


  • A man hangs a Catalan flag at his balcony near Barcelona in 2013Caledonia homage

    Who are the Europeans with an eye on the Scottish referendum?


  • Elephant Diaries - BBCGoing wild

    Wildlife film-makers reveal the tricks of the trade


  • Hamas rally in the West Bank village of Yatta, 2006Hamas hopes

    Why the Palestinian group won't back down yet


  • A woman dining aloneTable for one

    The restaurants that love solo diners


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.