Sohel Chowdhury Murder: Aziz Mohammad Bhai, 2 others get life in prison

66

A Dhaka court yesterday said prosecution witnesses tried to hide facts while giving their statements in film actor Sohel Chowdhury’s murder case.

Judge Arunav Chakraborty of the Speedy Trial Tribunal-2 of Dhaka made the observations while sentencing three accused — businessman Aziz Mohammad Bhai, Afakul Islam alias Bunty Islam and Adnan Siddiqui — to life imprisonment in the case.

The three were also fined Tk 2 lakh each, in default of which they will have to serve six months more in jail. The court also issued conviction warrants against them.

On December 18, 1998, Sohel was shot dead by some unidentified criminals at Trumps Club in Abedin Tower on Banani’s Road-18.

On the same day, his brother Towhidul Islam Chowdhury filed a murder case with Gulshan Police Station against some unidentified people.

Six other accused — Ashish Rai Choudhury, Tariq Sayeed Mamun, Faruque Abbasi, Sanzidul Hasan Emon, Selim Khan and Harun-Or-Rashid alias Leather Liton – were acquitted as the charges against them were not proven.

In the observations, the judge said, “The state’s witnesses tried to save their own skins while testifying in court. Moreover, the CD [case dockets] disappeared.”

He added, “Sohel Chowdhury had a previous enmity with Aziz Mohammad Bhai. He was not an infamous person. Yet he was shot. Those who testified were also biased and tried to hide the truth. Even the magistrate, who recorded the statements, was not produced before the court to testify.

“It has an adverse effect on the people when the case has not been tried in so many years. The soul of every deadman wants justice.”

During the delivery of the verdict, Ashish Rai and Emon were present in the courtroom.

Upon hearing about his acquittal, Emon, a top-listed criminal, expressed his satisfaction.

Speaking to The Daily Star inside the courtroom, he said, “Thanks God, I got justice in the case. I am very glad.”

Meanwhile, Dhaka Metropolitan Public Prosecutor Abu Abdullah told reporters they would appeal against the verdict.

Sohel Chowdhury’s daughter Lamia Chowdhury said, “No matter what happens now, my father will not come back. They [the criminals] will have to answer for what they have done. Their imprisonment, whether they live up to it or not, would not make the pain that we have been through go away.

“My father’s death has had a deep impact on my life and it will not change in any way. I have to live with this reality. We haven’t seen any change in our lives due to their trial.”

Security on the court premises was beefed up yesterday centring the verdict in the sensational murder case.

Additional police forces were deployed in front of the tribunal, said a court inspector.

During the trial, 10 prosecution witnesses testified before the court.

After the filing of the case, the Detective Branch of police on July 30, 1998, pressed charges against nine accused.

On October 30, 2001, the Additional Metropolitan Sessions Judge’s Court-3 of Dhaka framed the charges.

Two years later, the case was transferred to the Speedy Trial Tribunal-2 for its quick disposal.

Following a petition of an accused in the case, the High Court in 2003 stayed the trial proceedings.

LondonGBDESK//

Comments are closed.

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More