On June 6, 2022, members of a student group known as the Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL) attacked a protest held by progressive student organizations, near the University of Dhaka campus. The protesters were demonstrating to demand a proper investigation into a container depot fire that occurred the day before.
According to reports, conflict between the student groups began when protesters did not allow BCL members to cross the street. However, student representatives for the progressive organizations stated that the attack was unprompted and that BCL members assaulted the protesters with bricks. At least seven students were injured; one was transported to the hospital.
Saddam Hossain, the general secretary of the University of Dhaka BCL branch, denied involvement of Chhatra League in the incident.
Scholars at Risk is concerned about violent attacks on student protesters. Students have a responsibility to refrain from violence against their peers, and to respect freedom of expression and freedom of association. This conduct is protected by international human rights instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – to which Bangladesh is a party. In addition to the harm to the immediate victims, such attacks undermine academic freedom and democratic society generally.
*SAR identified this incident in data made publicly available by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED)