A total of 20, 326 leaders and activists of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party have so far been arrested and 73,123 party followers sued in 837 cases filed since October 28 following clashes with the members of the law enforcement agencies and the ruling Awami League activists over a grand rally in Dhaka.

Jatiyatabadi Ainjibi Forum, a pro-BNP lawyers’ organisation, shared the information at a press conference at South Hall of Supreme Court Bar Association on Wednesday.

Barrister Kaisar Kamal, secretary general of the forum and also law affairs secretary of the BNP, read out a written statement at the press conference.

Moreover, 17 people including one journalist were killed across the country over the last one month since October 28, he said.

In the scripted statement, Kaisar claimed that 8,249 people were hurt since the October 28 attacks carried out by the government agencies and Awami League deliberately, out of revenge.

A total of 636 BNP supporters were sentenced for different periods in 35 cases what they call in false cases over the past three months, he said.

He said that more than 50 lakh BNP men were sued in over 1.5 lakh cases in 2009-2023.

Kaisar alleged that the government had been harassing and arresting lawyers so that they could not provide legal assistance to the victims (general people and BNP fellows) who had been arrested and harassed illegally in ‘ghost cases’.

Relatives of the opposition parties, sick family members, people with disabilities and even under age people were arrested, he alleged.

He claimed that houses and business structures of the BNP supporters were ransacked and looted.

Urging the government to stop the harassment on the BNP leaders and activists, he demanded that the arrested party fellows including secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, standing committee members Mirza Abas and Amir Khasru Mahmud be released immediately.

The forum president and also former attorney general AJ Mohammad Ali, Mahbub Uddin Khokan, Badrudozza Badal, Ruhul Quddus Kajal and advocate Gazi Kamrul Islam Sajal were also present.