Officials of Chattogram Metropolitan Police’s Detective Branch (DB) have termed the role of jail authorities suspicious, in the investigation into the murder of notorious criminal Amit Muhuri inside Chattogram Central Jail (CCJ) on May 29.
A missing 10-minute window of CCTV footage of the prison ward and unsatisfactory answers of the jail authorities about some matters have raised the questions, said DB officers.
Ripon Nath, also an inmate, is now on a five-day police remand, where he reportedly told police officials that he thrashed Amit’s head with a brick -- which was being used for setting up a stove inside the jail -- due to an altercation centring where to sleep, DB’s Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC) Asif Mohiuddin told The Daily Star.
“Ripon claimed that he killed Amit alone, and gave some vital information about Amit during the remand,” the ADC added.
Seeking to be unnamed, a police official investigating the case told this newspaper, “In remand, Ripon told police that Amit used to cook in a makeshift stove inside the cell, and there was a television with cable connection inside the cell.”
“On May 29, they [Amit, Ripon and another inmate Belal] watched TV after dinner. Before sleeping, Amit and Ripon locked into an altercation as Amit asked Ripon to sleep near his feet,” said the police official quoting Ripon.
The police official also said they came to learn that both Ripon and Amit consumed marijuana inside the cell before the altercation.
Asked about it, ADC Asif said, “Police confirmed that there was a TV inside the cell, and seized the brick which was used in the killing. However, they did not find a TV and other cooking utensils while visiting the cell.”
“We asked the jail authorities about those, but they could not give us any satisfactory answer,” Asif said.
ADC Asif added, “We came to learn that Amit had rivalry with some inmates over distribution and control of drugs inside the jail; we are verifying the names.”
Amit, an accused in 15 cases including two for murder, was killed inside room-6 of the cell-32 of CCJ, allegedly by Ripon Nath.
Jailor Nasir Ahmed filed a murder case with Kotwali Police Station accusing Ripon.
According to the case statement, Amit engaged in a fight with Ripon inside the cell and Ripon hit him in the head with a brick. Critically injured Amit was rushed to Chattogram Medical College Hospital around 10pm, where he died around 1am.
MISSING 10-MINUTE FOOTAGE
Investigators received CCTV footage of CCJ on the day Amit was killed. However, footage of 10 minutes -- when alleged killer Ripon was shifted to Amit’s cell in the afternoon -- have mysteriously disappeared.
“We are working on this, as it has raised some questions in our mind,” ADC Asif said.
“We will interrogate prison guards, a subedar [senior jail guard] and others to clarify some information gleaned during investigation,” he added.
Contacted, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) AKM Fazlul Haque of Chattogram range prison told this correspondent, “Our three-member probe committee is working on it, and will submit its report within 10 working days.”
“Action will be taken against officials whose negligence will be found during investigation,” said the DIG.