AL hails verdict

Special Correspondent

21 January, 2020 12:00 AM printer

Awami League on Monday hailed the court verdict on the mass killing in police firing targeting party president Sheikh Hasina in Chattogram.

On January 24 in 1988, police opened fire on Sheikh Hasina heading towards Laldighi Maidan in a procession to attend a public rally against the misrule of military ruler HM Ershad.

At least 24 people were killed and over 200 others injured in the violent attack.

Five former police personnel were awarded capital punishment in the mass killing case.

Hailing the verdict, AL leaders said they are happy to get justice after 32 years.

AL presidium member Mohammad Nasim told the daily sun that they welcome the verdict for getting the justice after so many years.

“The verdict proves that the Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina-led government has established rule of law in the country,” he said.

“The verdict is an awareness message for those who committed the crimes with state patron,” he added.

AL joint general secretary AFM Bahauddin Nasim said that Sheikh Hasina was the prime target of the attack on that day.

“The attack was carried out as part of an evil plan. Through the verdict, the country has been made a step forward in establishing rule of law,” he said.

Chattogram District and Sessions Judge Mohammad Ismail Hossain handed down the verdict awarding the punishment to JC Mandal, Prodip Barua, Mustafizur Rahman, Shah Md Abdullah and Momtaj Uddin.

A case was filed four years later on March 5, 1992, by lawyer Shahidul Huda with the-then Chattogram Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Court against 46 people, including the then police commissioner Mirza Raqibul Huda.

A total of 53 eye witnesses including AL Presidium Member and former minister Mosharrof Hossain MP, deposited their statements before the court of Chattogram Divisional Special Judge.

The first charge sheet in the case was submitted on December 12, 1997, the second supplementary charge sheet was also submitted on December 3, 1998 accusing eight police personnel while the charges were framed against eight cops on 9 May in 2000.

Among the convicts, JC Mandal, who is the former Patrol Inspector of Chattogram Kotwali area, remained fugitive.

Three of the eight accused in the case already passed away during the trial.