Free Dhanmondi ground, environmentalists ask Sk Jamal Club

Free Dhanmondi ground, environmentalists ask Sk Jamal Club

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Environmentalists and Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club officials are at loggerheads over the possession of the Dhanmondi Eight playground.
The environmentalists are saying the club is trying to take control of the ground and demand that it be made available for the locals.
The club officials on the other hand are saying the playground is a place for elites and commoners do not belong there.Speaking at a press conference at the ground on Saturday, Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club President Manjur Kader said Pakistani military dictator Ayub Khan had made the Dhanmondi area for elites.
“Therefore only elites have the right to come and play here. Street rats cannot play here,” he said.
The club authorities have filed a case against the environmentalists for entering the grounds to hold a protest. Among those accused are environmentalist and architect Mobassher Hossain and Sultana Kamal Women’s Sports Association Secretary Qamrunnahar Dana.
Jamilur Reza Chowdhury, the president of Bangladesh Paribesh Andolan, said no one had the right to decide who would play at the ground.
Sheikh Jamal authorities have posted guards in front of the playground’s entrance.
Mobassher Hossain said Manjur Kader’s statement showed he did not respect the court’s order.
“He does not want Dhanmondi’s residents and sports lovers to play there. Basically they are trying to take over the ground.”
Lawyer Sarah Hossain is fighting the legal battle over the playground on behalf of the environmentalists. She said in 2011 the High Court had ordered all illegal structures be removed from the playground and it be opened to the public within 15 days.
“In 2013, the Appellate Division issued a show cause notice for violating the order. But the matter has been stuck there.”
Bangladesh Football Federation President Kazi Salahuddin took sides with the Sheikh Jamal authorities at their press conference. Bangladesh Cricket Board President Nazmul Hassan Papan also voiced his support. – bdnews24.com

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