Protesting Police Harassment
Ridesharing biker sets fire to own bike
A ridesharing biker set his motorcycle on fire after a traffic sergeant attempted to file a case against him in the capital's Badda Link Road in Gulshan area on Monday morning.
The video of the incident, showing the motorcycle ablaze, went viral on Facebook.
The man is identified as Shawkat Alam Sohel, a motorcycle rider for a ridesharing service.
Police said Shawkat 'acted on impulse' after a case was being filed against him for violating traffic law.
The viral video shows a red motorcycle in fire while a man standing next to it threw his helmet and a few other things into the fire.
Locals and two policemen at the scene attempted to douse the fire while the man was repeatedly saying, "Do'nt come near."
A pedestrian was heard saying "calm down, brother" as the man burning his motorcycle went on a rant.
Shawkat could not be contacted for comment as he was taken into police custody shortly after the incident.
Abul Kalam Azad, Officer-in-Charge of Badda Police Station, said Shawkat set his bike on fire out of frustration and anger as an on duty sergeant attempted to penalise him for traffic rule violation.
Dhaka Metropolitan Police Badda Zone Assistant Commissioner (Traffic) Subir Ranjan Das said that the bike was heading from Rampura to Gulshan.
"Some ridesharing bikers were waiting in the middle of the road for passengers, causing traffic gridlock in the area. A traffic sergeant went there to penalise the bikers for illegal parking. Shawkat instantly set his bike on fire before anyone could understand anything," he said.
"He was severely affected financially due to the pandemic and was going through some psychological issues too. Earlier, he incurred a loss of around Tk 9 lakh after running a shop. He is burdened with debt," the police officer said.