A Bangladeshi court on December 1, ordered life sentence to three transport workers for a road crash last year which resulted in killing two students and sparked major anti-government protests. Scores of students took to the streets after the two teenagers were hit by a bus that had been illegally racing through the streets of Dhaka in July 2018. Tapash Kumar, the prosecutor said that three workers including two drivers were found guilty of culpable homicide. He said that the prosecutors are happy with the verdict. The rallies began over road safety issues but soon morphed into opposition to the government which lasted more than a week and paralyzed the capital's traffic.
As the demonstrations escalated across the country, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina ordered security forces to take actions which left more than 150 people injured as police fired tear gas and rubber pellets. Pro-government groups also attacked the demonstrators as well as the journalists. Traffic accidents have generally increased in Bangladesh with at least 7,500 people dying on the road in 2018 over just 20 days, according to the Passengers Welfare Association. Due to the protests, the government passed a tough law in the country which has a population of 168 million after facing a backlash from the strong transport workers' unions. Reckless driving and unfit vehicles are very common in the major cities of Bangladesh but the unions have frequently stopped authorities from taking any actions against drivers or vehicle owners. The authorities have noted that drivers are not properly trained and ignorant of traffic rules as driving licenses are easily available paying bribes.
A Bangladesh court handed death sentences to seven members of an Islamist militant group for their role in an attack on a cafe in 2016 that killed 22 people, mostly foreigners https://t.co/QkeTyRqt6s pic.twitter.com/QIbEr5RtgQ— Reuters (@Reuters) November 27, 2019