Court asks PBI to investigate cases against Barishal UNO, OC

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On August 18, a court in Barishal ordered the Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) to look into two cases filed against Barisal Sadar Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Munibur Rahman, two police officials, and five others, alleging that they fired gunshots at officers and employees of the Barishal City Corporation.

Nurul Islam, Officer-in-Charge of Kotwali Police Station, and Shahjalal Mollik, Sub-inspector of Kotwali Police Station, are the two officers.

According to Kayum Khan Kaiser, a lawyer for the cases, Barishal additional chief metropolitan magistrate Masum Billah issued the order and instructed the PBI to submit the investigation report by September 23.

Earlier in the day, BCC Panel Mayor Rafiqul Islam, who is also a member of the Barishal City Awami League, filed a case in the court of Barishal Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Masum Billah against the eight individuals, including the UNO.

According to the case statement, on the night of August 18, UNO Munibur Rahman and five Ansar members opened fire on BCC officials and staff, as well as local leaders and activists from the Awami League and the Chhatra League, while police charged baton on them, injuring 50 persons.

In an interview with our Barishal correspondent, lawyer Kaisar claimed there was an argument with the defendants when some city corporation employees went to remove the banner festoon on the day.

They opened fire on BCC executives, staff, and Awami League leaders at one point, according to the lawyer.

In addition, BCC Revenue Officer Babul Haldar filed a case in the same court on the same charge against six men, including UNO Munibur Rahman.

In the two cases, over 100 people who have not been identified have been charged, according to lawyer Kaiser.

Meanwhile, the same court today dismissed the bail requests of twenty-two people arrested in two cases brought by the UN in connection with skirmishes in Barishal involving men from the Chhatra League, Jubo League, and Awami League, as well as police and Ansar.

Witnesses say the violence started when some BCC staffers — believed to be mayor’s supporters and members of the local AL units — showed up at the UNO’s office in the city’s C&B area around 9:30 p.m. on August 18 and tried to take down banners put up by Farooque’s supporters commemorating National Mourning Day.

The mayor’s supporters began scolding the BCC officials as on-duty Ansar members prevented them from removing the flags. The UN hurried to the scene after receiving information from his government apartment on the same campus. The Mayor’s supporters were misbehaving with him.

At one point, supporters of Mayor Serniabat Sadiq Abdullah of the Barishal City Corporation (BCC) left the area, only to return with another 60-70 individuals. They then went towards the UNO’s mansion, smashing the gate open. The UNO then ordered the Ansar members on duty to begin fire.

Batons were drawn by other police officers who had already come to disperse the crowd. According to AL sources and witnesses, at least 50 people were injured, some of whom were shot.

Source: The Daily Star

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