The Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Saturday staged demonstrations in metropolitan cities and district headquarters across the country protesting the removal of Swadhinata Padak (Independence Medal) conferred on late president Ziaur Rahman Bir Uttam, also the party founder, from the National Museum.

The party announced the program on Sep 8, a day after the Swadhinata Padak, conferred on Zia in 2003, was removed from the National Museum on Sep 7 following a decision of the cabinet committee on national awards.

The BNP brought out short processions in different thanas in Dhaka City, party leaders said. Dhaka City unit BNP held a protest rally at the National Press Club auditorium on Friday.

Party leaders and activists in Rajshahi led by city BNP president Mizanur Rahman Minu brought out a procession from Bhuban Mohan Park and paraded different streets before ending at the park.

Bogra reported that BNP leaders and activists of the district unit held a rally in front of its office at about 4pm. Police obstructed them from launching a procession.

Leaders and activists of the party of Barisal city and south and north district units organised rallies near the party office in the city but there too police prevented them from bringing out a procession.

The BNP brought out processions and held rallies in different cities including Chittagong, Sylhet, Khulna, Narsingdi, Shariatpur, Jamalpur, Manikganj, Madaripur, Nilphamari, Keraniganj, Narayanganj, Khagrachhari, Netrakona, Gaibhandha, Savar and other places across the country.