Businessman traceless for six days
12:00 AM, March 17, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 04:28 AM, March 17, 2018

Businessman traceless for six days

Family alleges he was picked up by plainclothes men

A businessman remained traceless for six days after some people identifying themselves as detectives had abducted him from his house in the capital's Bashundhara Residential Area, said his family members.

Sazal Chowdhury, 46, who is involved in ship breaking business, was dragged out of his flat on the first floor of a building at Block-G and forced him into a microbus around 7:30pm on March 11.

The abductors also took away the CCTV footage recorder of the building. 

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Devdas Bhattacharya, additional commissioner (DB) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police, told The Daily Star that no DB team picked him up. Several teams were working to find him.

Sazal's mother Diluara Begum went to Bhatara Police Station immediately after the incident, but police denied recording any case or general diary, alleged the woman.

Contacted, SM Kamruzzaman, officer-in-charge of the police station, said they registered the GD on Tuesday after an investigation.

Diluara, 65, said the GD contained some wrong information. “I did not write anything in the GD. They [police] wrote it, but they did not read it out to me. I just signed it today [yesterday].”

“A group of 10-12 people in plainclothes called Sazal out of his flat and picked him up in a microbus. We [Sazal's family members] did not have any contact with him since then,” reads the GD.

The version of the GD contradicts the statements of Diluara. According to her, some people introducing themselves as detectives entered their flat and tied the hands of her son together in front of her and started beating him up.

“My son was screaming for help. But I could not help him,” Diluara said.

OC Kamruzzaman said they mentioned the information, provided to them by the victim's family in the GD. They would investigate the incident and try to find him.

He said they were looking into Sazal's business rivalry and family feud. They were collecting CCTV footage of the nearby areas to identify the microbus and the kidnappers.

Yesterday, Diluara was seen showing the photograph of her son to everyone -- police, journalists and her relatives -- whoever visited their flat. She was making an appeal for her son's safe return.

“I toiled a lot to bring him up as his father who joined the Liberation War never returned,” she said with tears rolling down her face.

Sazal was in her womb during the Liberation War in 1971. Sazal has been staying in the flat for two years with his mother and only schoolgoing son Shihab Chowdhury.

Describing the incident, Diluara said his son was sitting with her in a room around 7:30pm when security guard Emdadul Haque knocked at the door.

As soon as Sazal opened the door, 14 to 15 people, mostly wearing black T-shirts and black pants, entered the flat and tied his hands and started beating him up.

The kidnappers also tied her to a door handle before leaving the flat with Sazal. Shihab could not hear anything as he was sleeping in another room and everything happened within five minutes, said Diluara.

The family was preparing to shift to Uttara from Bashundhara. They were supposed to take their belongings there today.  

A DB team visited the house around 12:30pm yesterday.

Diluara told DB officials that two brothers of Sazal's second wife were among the abductors.

Sazal's first wife died when their only son Shihab was three months old. He married another woman in 2014, but divorced her in 2016.

Besides, he has a rivalry with a businessman in Banani and some influential locals in Airport area over a land dispute, Diluara said.

According to Diluara, the Banani businessman owes Sazal Tk 10 crore and a case has been filed in this connection. Some 20 kanthas of their land was grabbed in Airport area, she alleged.  

Security guard Emdadul said, “I took two people to the flat as they wanted to meet Sazal sir. I did not ask them anything as he told me not to talk much with his visitors.”

Some others followed the two, dragged Sazal out of the building and forced him into a microbus, he said.

Emdadul said two of them later introduced themselves as detectives. Brandishing firearms, they took away the CCTV footage recorder.

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