At least 10 people received bullet injuries when the police opened fire during an eviction drive at a market at Banani under the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) on Thursday.
Nurul Alam, Assistant Commissioner of DMP Gulshan Zone, told this correspondent that the police opened fire at the magistrate's order. The injured were being treated at various hospitals, he said.
A mobile court led by DNCC Magistrate Mahbubur Rahman launched an eviction drive at Banani DNCC Super Market at around 11:00am. The traders started protesting, what they said, the sudden drive.
A DNCC official claimed traders, who illegally run their business at the supermarket and its surrounding areas, attacked the magistrate during the drive at around 12:00 pm.
At one stage, members of the police under the Public Order and Management (POM) sprayed rubber bullets to disperse the unruly traders. About 10-12 people were injured, said officer-in-charge of Banani Police Station Bhuiyan Mahbub Hasan.
"I wanted to see a notice in this connection. But they did not listen and instead he (the magistrate) began harassing me," said Mahmudul Hasan Azad, General Secretary of the traders' association in the market.
"An argument broke out between traders and the magistrate. At one point, he ordered the police to open fire. Among the seriously injured, eight were taken to the United Hospital and two to Kurmitola General Hospital, Azad said.
The traders alleged that the police fired several gun-shots inside the market. A scuffle between the two sides eventually led to some more people getting hurt.
Rakib Hossain, a sub-inspector, Banani police station, said bullet-hit Rana, Halim, Mintu, Jamal, Mozammel, Alamgir, Khokon, and Arif were rushed to Kurmitola General Hospital and others to nearby medical centres.
The businessmen of the market demanded the injured be compensated and treated at the expense of DNCC.