Police fire tear gas as Bangladesh protest turns violent

Bangladesh police fired riot guns and tear gas Wednesday as a protest by bus drivers and truckers turned violent, with several injured in clashes that saw a low-grade bomb hurled at officers.

Dhaka: Bangladesh police fired riot guns and tear gas Wednesday as a protest by bus drivers and truckers turned violent, with several injured in clashes that saw a low-grade bomb hurled at officers.

One driver was critically injured after being shot while four officers were taken to hospital after a crude explosive device was detonated, Dhaka police inspector Bacchu Mia told AFP.

Hundreds of drivers have brought transport services to a halt nationwide for a second consecutive day over the jailing of a colleague, staging a mass strike at the country`s largest bus station.

Vehicles were torched and ambulances targeted as the protest turned ugly, with police opening fire to bring the melee under control.

"They threw a bomb at a police post, injuring several officers," Dhaka police deputy commissioner Masud Ahmed said of the protesters.

"We fired... to bring the situation under control."

The protests began at the weekend after a court passed a life sentence on a bus driver over a deadly 2011 accident that left five people dead, including an award-winning filmmaker and a prominent journalist.

The strike has affected businesses reliant on truck deliveries and left millions of commuters stranded.

The strike could be lifted Thursday after a meeting between the road minister and strike leaders, private station Jamuna TV said.