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The name resembles a spray bottle made of tin, probably coloured in red, which would obviously used by “police” on “aggrieved people” as a punishment for demonstrating.

A can, however, says this spray could be used as a defensive tool to protect from attacks of mad dogs and mighty animals.

These cans were recently used by Dhaka police on protesting teachers demanding the government’s financial assistance. It worked well, some two thousand teachers were dispersed very quickly. Many of them were hospitalised as their eyes were burning severely. The impact is long-term, say experts.

There’s actually no pepper in those cans but a chemical — Penasyle Chloride.  Because of such harm, the developed countries are abandoning its use. But the Bangladesh govt has introduced these cans for riot police along with many other tools to suppress the protestors and criminals.

Pepper spray and tear gas spray have replaced the conventional tear gas canisters. Five thousand such cans were imported from China last year.

Shame!

You, the state, is never people-friendly. You have legitimated baton-charge, hot water gun, detention and torture by law enforcement agencies and ensured their impunity.

This is no rule of law or a practice ground for democracy. The aggressive manner of a political or military-backed govt towards a growing pressure is unexpected in a fast-growing developing country like ours. Rather they should change their mindset and sit across the table to reach an agreement “peacefully”.

The present Awami League govt this term — like the previous years — has shown a very “disturbed” face (reaction) towards any “different view” or “public outrage”. No patience but cruel gesture is commonly seen among the govt topbrass.

Where’s freedom of expression!

Well, the Awami League supporters will also feel the “taste of pepper” when they will demonstrate on the streets as an opposition party. That’s, for now, is my corner of complacence.

UPDATE JAN 16: Dhaka Police used “pepper spray” on communists and left party activists during the half-day hartal protesting against the govt’s irrational and illegal decision to hike fuel prices by 5-7 taka. The home minister aka the master of baton-men claimed that spray was nothing new and that it was not harmful!!!