Court rejects journalist Rozina Islam’s appeal seeking passport

Rozina IslamProthom Alo file photo

A Dhaka court has rejected the appeal of Rozina Islam, special correspondent of Prothom Alo, seeking her passport submitted in the case filed under the Official Secrets Act. Additional chief metropolitan magistrate of Dhaka Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (CMM) Court, Muhammad Asaduzzaman Noor passed the order on Sunday.

Rozina Islam’s lawyer Ehsanul Haque Shomaji argued in favour of her appeal seeking her passport in the court.

He told the court, “Rozina Islam is respectful to the laws and courts of the country. Even before this, she went abroad with the permission of the court for treatment and submitted it upon her return. She did not ignore any condition given by the court either.”

Ehsanul Haque Shomaji further said, “Rozina Islam is ill. She wants to go abroad for treatment. Her husband is also sick. He will undergo a surgery abroad.”

After hearing both sides, the court rejected Rozina Islam's plea for her passport.

Speaking regarding this to Prothom Alo, Ehsanul Haque Shomaji said, “Rozina Islam has been deprived of justice by the order rejecting the appeal seeking her passport.”

Meanwhile, Sunday was also the day fixed by the court for the submission of the report of further investigation into the case. However, the Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) did not submit any report on the day. The court has fixed 25 June as the new date for the submission.

Rozina, who investigated stories of government corruption and mismanagement of the health sector in Bangladesh during the Covid-19 pandemic, was tortured and attacked on 17 May 2021, when she went to the health ministry on professional duty. She was detained for nearly six hours there.

Later, she was shown arrested in a case filed under the draconian Official Secrets Act. After investigating the case, the Detective Branch (DB) of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) submitted the final report to the court in July last year.