Three detained students of Jagannath University yesterday confessed to the murder of 24-year-old tailor Bishwajit Das during an opposition blockade early this month.
In their separate statements to a magistrate, Rafiqul Islam Shakil, Mahfuzur Rahman Nahid and Rasheduzzaman Shaon also said they are activists of Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL).
On the morning of December 9, they brought out an anti-blockade procession led by Jagannath University BCL President SM Shariful Islam and General Secretary Sirajul Islam.
The students said while marching in the procession near Bahadur Shah Park, close to their university, they heard explosion.
â€œWe saw a man running; we thought he was escaping after exploding cocktail,â€ Shakil, who was seen in news photos and videos hacking Bishwajit with a machete, said in his statement. â€œShaon and I hit Bishwajit with iron rods.â€
The investigation officer of Bishwajit murder case produced Shakil, Nahid and Shaon -- who are among the six students taken earlier on eight-day remand -- before Metropolitan Magistrate Mohammad Erfan Ullah yesterday.
Yesterday, a Dhaka court extended the remand of two of the students -- HM Kibria and Kaiyum Mia -- for three days. Another student who is on remand is Saiful Islam.
Four others -- Mamun-ur Rashid, Faruk Hossain, Mosleuddin Muslim and Nahiduzzaman Tuhin -- have been shown arrested in the murder case, although they have no criminal record.
The trio told the magistrate the president and general secretary were standing at a distance while they were beating up Bishwajit near the park, taking him for a pro-blockade supporter.
They named Kibria, Yunus, Mostafa and several others who took part in the killing, and added that Rajon, a fourth-year student, hacked Bishwajit with a machete-like weapon several times.
Talking to The Daily Star, an investigator preferring anonymity said they got some names who ordered the BCL cadres to go tough if pro-blockade men create anarchy.
The three students in their statements said they were involved with the pro-ruling party organisation, the officer added.
The Prime Minister's Office on Dec 13 claimed nobody from Chhatra League killed Bishwajit, although news photographers and videos already had made it clear who hacked the youth to death in broad daylight.
Investigation Officer of the case, Tajul Islam, quoted the three as saying more than 15 persons had attacked Bishwajit.
Another investigator, requesting anonymity, said, â€œWe are trying to nab the rest of the attackers on the basis of these confessional statements.â€