Jatiya Party Chairman HM Ershad has been buried in his hometown Rangpur.
The former military strongman, who ruled the country for nine years, was laid to rest on Tuesday (Jul 16) at the premises of his residence 'Polli Nibash' in the northern divisional city.
Jatiya Party was forced to revise its decision of the burial at the military graveyard in Dhaka Cantonment due to rigid stance of party followers in Rangpur.
“We wanted Ershad to be buried at Rangpur from the very beginning,” his younger brother GM Quader had said earlier in the day.
He had said that it was Roushan Ershad, his wife, who wanted her husband to be buried at Dhaka for various reasons but later agreed on Rangpur given the people’s love for him.
On Sunday (Jul 13), the day of Ershad’s demise, Secretary General Moshiur Rahman Ranga had announced that the party chief will be buried at the military graveyard but the announcement was met with protests from the party’s Rangpur unit leaders who later prepared the grave at ‘Polli Nibash.’
A large number of army personnel took position around the prepared grave before the burial in order to maintain discipline as thousands gathered for the burial.
Military men carried the ex-army chief’s coffin to the grave around 5:35pm. Later, a life sketch of the Jatiya Party chief was read out before observing a one-minute silence as a tribute to him.
The deceased leader of opposition, who had been on life support for the last 10 days, breathed his last at the Combined Military Hospital in Dhaka on Sunday (Jul 14).
He had been suffering from myelodysplastic syndrome or a low-level of haemoglobin in his blood for a long time along with kidney and liver problem, high bilirubin and severe keen pain.
Ershad’s fourth and final funeral prayer was held at the field of Rangpur Collectorate School and College after zuhr prayers on Tuesday.
A helicopter of Bangladesh Air Force carrying the coffin of the Jatiya Party chief landed at Rangpur Cantonment around 11:30am.
Jatiya Party acting chairman GM Quader, Secretary General Moshiur Rahman Ranga, former secretary-general Ruhul Amin Hawlader and Ershad’s son Rahgir Al Mahi Shad Ershad, among others, accompanied the body.
His first janaza was held at the Army Central Mosque in Dhaka on Sunday while two other janazas were held in the capital on Monday.
Ershad’s qulkhwani will be held on Wednesday (Jul 17) at Azad mosque in Dhaka’s Gulshan.