The bodies of Narayanganj city councillor Nazrul Islam and five others were recovered today from the Shitalakkhya river three days after seven people, including Nazrul, were kidnapped in broad daylight in Narayanganj.
All the bodies were dumped into the river in a similar way. The murderers cut the victims’ bellies and then tied the bodies to sacks full of bricks before throwing into water, according to police.
The victims were blindfolded, and their hands and legs were tied with ropes, said law enforcers.
Among the dead are Chandan Sarkar, senior lawyer at Narayanganj District Judge’s Court, and his driver Ibrahim.
The other three victims are Nazrul’s aides Moniruzzaman Shawpan, local Jubo League activist, and Tajul Islam, president of Siddhirganj unit of Sheikh Russell Jatiya Shishu Kishor Parishad, and Liton.
Locals at Shantinagar of Kalagachhiya union first noticed two bloated bodies floating amid water hyacinth near the river banks around 3:00pm, and informed the police.
The law enforcers then launched a search operation, and found four more bodies floating in the river by the evening.
The bodies were so decomposed that the victims’ relatives found it difficult to identify them.
Nazrul’s younger brother Abdus Salam identified the councillor’s body by his clothes. The others victims were identified by the special marks on their bodies, and clothes.
The relatives of five of the victims pointed fingers at ward-4 councillor Nur Hossain, and Shiddirganj Thana Awami League general secretary Hazi Yasin, who are aides to AL lawmaker Shamim Osman.
Locals and victims’ family members alleged that the duo run drugs racket in the area.
Nazrul's wife Selina Islam filed an abduction case against Nur, Yasin and four others on Monday.
“Oh Allah … what Shamim Osman has done … the day before his [Nazrul] abduction, he met Shamim Osman and pleaded bhai [Shamim] to protect him, saying he would go to the court the next day,” Selina told reporters after her husband’s body was recovered.
The news of the murder of the six caused widespread anger among locals in Narayanganj.
Angry locals blockaded the Dhaka-Chittagong highway at Sanarpar in Siddirganj and also Dhaka-Narayanganj link road, bringing the vehicular movement to a halt on the highway around 4:00pm.
They also damaged and set ablaze vehicles on the highway.
Around 7:00pm, locals set fire to Shams Filling Station owned by Hazi Yasin at Mouchak on Dhaka-Chittagong highway.
Nazrul along with his three aides and driver were abducted near Adalot Para on Sunday while they were returning by a car from Narayanganj District Judge’s Court. Earlier, he had appeared in the court in connection with a case.
Police found Nazrul’s car abandoned in Rajendrapur area of Gazipur that night.
At about the same time, lawyer Chandan and his driver Ibrahim were kidnapped from the court area in Narayanganj. Chandan’s car was found abandoned in the capital’s Gulshan area.
As the news of Nazrul's body recovery spread, his supporters blocked the Dhaka-Chittagong highway at Shimrail point of the city by burning tyres, said Abdul Matin, officer-in-charge of Shiddhirganj Police Station.
No vandalism however was reported.
Police diverted traffic to avoid any untoward incident, the police official said.