Former lawmaker MA Awal and four others were arrested in different places of the country on Thursday in connection with the gruesome murder of businessman Shahin Uddin.
Rapid Action Battalion arrested MA Awal, 50, in Bhairab of Kishoreganj and two other accused -- Mohammad Hasan, 13, and Jahirul Islam, 27, -- in Haimchar of Chandpur and Bauphal of Patuakhali respectively.Besides, detective police arrested Sumon Bepari, 33, a former Chhatra League leader, and his associate Rockey Talukder, 25, from Kalapani in Pallabi and Rayerbagh in Jatrabari of capital Dhaka.
A gang of miscreants killed Shahin, 33, in front of his six-year-old son at Pallabi in the capital on May 16.
After the arrest of ex-MP Awal, Hasan and Jahirul, the RAB held a press briefing at its Kawran Bazar Media centre on Thursday.
During the briefing, Commander Khandaker Al Moin, director (Legal and Media) of the RAB, said that MP Awal was the mastermind of the murder.
He plotted to kill Shahin following a dispute over a piece of land, he mentioned. The RAB officer said Awal, Taher and Sumon held a secret meeting at Awal’s office at Kalabagan four to five days before the murder.
According to the officer, during the meeting; they plotted to kill Shahin and asked Sumon to implement the plot.As per the plot, about 10 to 12 goons led by Sumon took part in the killing mission.
During primarily interrogation, the arrested men said that on May 15, Sumon, Babu and some others gathered at a place in Pallabi and planned how to kill Shahin.
As per the plan, they gathered in the killing spot in the afternoon of May 16. Before that, two of them called Shahin to the place in the name of setting the land related dispute.
When Shahin with his son reached the spot, Sumon, Monir, Manik, Hasan, Iqbal Murad and some others began to hack him with sharp weapons indiscriminately.
They killed him within five to seven minutes and left the spot. At that time, Babu and other accused took position at several points of the area as lookout men.
After killing, Sumon phoned Awal and said, “Sir finished.” Afterwards, the killers went to several parts of the country for hiding.
Awal used to pay Tk 10,000-12,000 to each of the accused as they worked as his cohorts. Besides, they were paid much more money in any special work.
Sumon led them. He sued to commit extortion, drug trade and other crimes at the area.
Earlier on May 13, the RAB-4 arrested Dipu, 28, from Tangail.
Aklima Begum, mother of the victim, filed a murder case mentioning names of 20 people, including MP Awal, and 15 unknown others, with Pallabi Police Station on May 17.
According to the family members, Awal allegedly grabbed 10 decimals of land worth Tk 5 crore owned by Shahin and his family members. The land is located at Ali Nagar Residential Area at Burirtek in Pallabi.
Shahin opposed him to grab the land and was trying to bring the piece of land from the former MP.
In November last year, Awal with 20 to 25 local goons, including Sumon, held a secret meeting at Pallabi and plotted to kill Shahin.
One of them phoned his mother and leaked out the secret plot. On that day, Aklima Begum went to lodge a general diary with the Pallabi Police Station, but police did not record the GD.
Next day, as per plot, a group of plotters, including Sumon, hacked Shahin in Pallabi area and left the scene after confirming that he died.
A case was filed against the attackers with the police station, but police did not arrest the accused.
A few days ago, a warrant of arrest was issued against Sumon and other accused. Then, police arrested Sumon, but he could come out from jail on bail just one day of his arrest.
Awal, who was the former MP of Lakshmipur-1 constituency, was secretary general of Bangladesh Tarikat Federation.
In 2018, he was sacked from the party. Next year he founded Islami Gantantrik Party and became its chairman.
MA Awal is the owner of Heavily Developer Properties Ltd.