Dhaka courts: Over 1,500 BNP leaders, activists sentenced in 5 months

CMM Court, DhakaFile photo

Another 36 people were sentenced at different Dhaka courts Tuesday in two separate cases filed on charges of carrying out attacks on the police, obstructing them from carrying out government duties and vandalising vehicles.

Most of the convicted are leaders and activists of BNP and its associated bodies, including former president of Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal and Swechhasebak Dal general secretary Rajib Ahsan.

The court of Dhaka’s Chief Metropolitan Magistrate pronounced the verdict.

With this, different Dhaka courts sentenced at least 1,532 people in 97 cases in the last five months.

One of the cases was filed by the police in 2011 and another one by a vehicle driver in 2018 at Ramna police station. None of the accused were present in the court during the verdict.

Besides, all 24 accused were acquitted in a case filed at Sutrapur police station on charges of obstructing the police from carrying out government duties and vandalising vehicles in 2013.

Judge of Dhaka CMM court Saiful Islam pronounced the verdict in the case.

According to the first information report (FIR) of the case filed in 2011, some 200-250 leaders and activists of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami vandalised a bus and set it afire in front of Will Little Flower School and College in Kakrail, Dhaka, in the afternoon of 19 September that year.

When police members went to the spot, brickbats were thrown at them with an intention to kill them, added the FIR.

Bus driver Monu Mia filed the case.

The police submitted a charge sheet against 20 at the court on 4 November in 2012 and the court indicted them on 30 December in 2014.

The prosecution produced five witnesses before the court in the case. Three are common people and two are police members.

Magistrate Shafi Uddin of Dhaka CMM court pronounced the verdict on Tuesday. All of the 20 accused were awarded two years imprisonment each.

Police filed the other case in 2018. The FIR said two students of Shaheed Ramiz Uddin Cantonment College were killed in a road accident on the airport road on 29 July in 2018. Students of many educational institutions in Dhaka took to the streets to protest at the deaths.

On 5 August that year the students vandalised seven to eight vehicles with bamboo and iron rods near an overbridge in Paribagh in the afternoon. They threw brick chips when police tried to obstruct them.

The report also said later fired tear gas shells to disperse the illegal gathering of people to ensure safety of lives and properties. The police lodged a case against 41 leaders and activists of BNP and its associate bodies including the then JCD president Rajib Ahsan.

The police submitted a charge sheet against 16 in the case on 8 August in 2020. The court framed charges against them on 22 March in 2022.

The deposition in the case started on 23 November this year and completed on 24 December.

The police could produce five out of 14 witnesses in the court with four being their own members.

Dhaka CMM court’s judge Md Mosharraf Hossin passed the verdict in the case. Each of the 16 accused were handed down two years and three months imprisonment.