INTRODUCTION: Judge Abdus Sattar has been sworn in as the eighth President of Bangladesh.
DACCA CITY, BANGLADESH (VISNEWS - ATIQUL ALAM)
TGV Awami League meeting
CU & SV League leader chanting and people follow. (2 SHOTS)
SV Mohammed Hanif speaking
SV & CU Dr. Kamal Hossain (left) seated with Awami League leaders. (2 SHOTS)
SV Women seated listening. (2 SHOTS)
SV ZOOM IN TO CU Kamal Hossain
GV Awami League demonstration through streets
SV PAN Demonstration
GV (20 November) Presidential palace and flags, plus guard. (3 SHOTS)
SV INTERIOR President-elect Sattar enters and stands for anthem
LV, SV & CU Audience and Sattar during anthem
SV Chief Justice reading oath and audience listening. (3 SHOTS)
SV & CU Sattar and Chief Justice continue with oath-taking. (2 SHOTS)
Background: INTRODUCTION: Judge Abdus Sattar has been sworn in as the eighth President of Bangladesh. The 75-year-old former supreme court justice took the oath of office on Friday (20 November) after a landslide victory in the Presidential election five days earlier. However, the result of that poll has come under serious criticism from the Awami League Opposition.
SYNOPSIS: The Awami League organised a protest demonstration for the capital Dacca, two days before the swearing-in ceremony. They also planned a national rally for Monday (23 November).
Opposition leader Dr. Kamal Hossain alleges that massive vote-rigging, favouring Mr. Sattar, took place during the election.
Although the government denies the charge, Dr. Hossain claims there was widespread malpractice, and has dubbed the election "a fraud and a farce".
There were conflicting estimates of the number who took part in the Dacca protest -- but it was well below the 20-thousand hoped for by the Awami League. Police armed with riot shields and bamboo canes were on standby, but the marchers left peacefully after listening to a series of speeches.
During the five and a half months since the assassination of President Zia Ur Rahman, Mr. Sattar has maintained government as vice-president.
Having held senior posts under Mr. Zia, the new President is expected to follow closely Zia's policies. They include the framework of civilian rule, a path that may bring President Sattar into conflict with the army. Some officers want a military role in the government, but the head-of-state does not agree. Mr. Sattar was educated in Calcutta, where he practised at the Bar. He later became a judge of the East Pakistan High Court, then went to the Supreme Court. For months after President Zia's murder, and during the election campaign, Mr. Sattar showed out as tough - both politically and physically.
The oath was administered by the Chief Justice of Bangladesh on behalf of the country's population of almost 72-million people.
Mr. Sattar must now select a Vice-President, a sensitive task with the wrong choice liable to cause deep division within government ranks.
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