Two DU teachers remanded again | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, August 31, 2007 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, August 31, 2007

Two DU teachers remanded again

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The two detained Dhaka University (DU) teachers yesterday told a court that they were subjected to mental torture during interrogation over the past seven days.
Blindfolded, they were taken to different places where other detainees were beaten up in front of them.
Metropolitan Magistrate Muhammad Saleh Uddin however declined to record what General Secretary of Dhaka University Teachers Association (Duta) Professor Anwar Hossain and Social Science Dean Prof Harun-or-Rashid said describing their days in confinement.
In response to a police prayer, he ordered the professors in detention to be shown arrested in another case and placed each of them on remand for four more days.
Earlier on August 24, security personnel hauled them in from their campus residences. They took them to an unspecified place for questioning about the recent student unrest that prompted the interim administration to clamp an indefinite curfew on the capital and five other divisional headquarters.
Shahbagh police yesterday produced Anwar and Harun before the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's (CMM) Court, Dhaka at 2:30pm after the end of their previous four-day remands yesterday.
Police petitioned the court to place them on a 10-day remand each for interrogation in the new case.
In the forwarding report of the first case, investigation officer (IO) Sub-Inspector (SI) Ali Asgar Khan said the accused have admitted to having involvement in the incidents mentioned in the first information report (FIR).
Besides, they have given some vital information about vandalism at different points across the campus. So, they should be in custody till the investigation is completed, added the IO.
SI Sirajul Islam of Shahbagh Police Station submitted the petition for the detainees to be shown arrested in the new case and sought for a further 10-day remand for interrogation.
The case was filed against some 6,000 unnamed students, teachers and outsiders for vandalising public and private property, obstructing the work of the police, and pelting the law enforcers with stones at DU on August 22.
Sirajul, also the IO, said the information gleaned so far suggests that the accused had endorsed processions, chanting slogans and the unruly students' going on the rampage on and around the campus between 10:00am and 4:00pm that day.
Besides, they took position at different points and made statements seeking to incite the students and outsiders to tear into the army post at the DU gymnasium.
Provoked, the unruly mob set fire to tyres and other flammable objects, barricaded the roads and damaged public property. They also threw projectiles at the policemen on duty, he said adding that the two need to be questioned for information that might lead to capture of the other accused.
STATEMENTS OF TEACHERS
During the hearing yesterday, the defence lawyers appealed to the court to allow the academics to describe where they have been kept and how they have been treated in captivity.
In reply, the magistrate said he would not record what they would say in the courtroom.
Breaking down into sobs, Dr Harun told the court that he was taken to different unknown places in the name of interrogation over the last one week. He could not sleep even for a moment during the time.
The social science dean said he was at his office when the incident took place. He tried his best to defuse the situation but to no avail.
Dr Anwar said that along with Harun he too was taken to different places, blindfolded. The interrogators forced them to watch the other arrestees get thrashings.
Also the dean of bioscience, he pleaded with the court not to send them in custody for further interrogation. If necessary, the police should interrogate them at the jail gate, Anwar added.
DEFENCE SUBMISSION
The counsels for the defence yesterday submitted two petitions--one for cancellation of the remand order and the other for medical tests of the arrestees.
They sought court orders allowing the confined DU professors to have some medical tests in line with a High Court directive to determine if the person to be quizzed is fit.
Moving the petitions, Advocate Rezaur Rahman said their clients' names were not included in the FIR. They were blindfolded and tortured mentally in custody.
In no way could a university teacher dedicated to moulding the students into nation-builders commit the offences mentioned in the case, the lawyer added.
Additional police forces were deployed on the court premises to avoid any untoward incident.

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