The investigation into the case filed against internationally-acclaimed photographer Shahidul Alam has been stayed for three months by the High Court.
The court also issued a rule asking why the case filed under Section 57 even after the law was abolished through formation of Digital Security Act should not be declared illegal.
The bench of Justice Sheikh Hassan Arif and Justice Razik-Al-Jalil passed the order and rule after hearing a writ petition filed by Shahidul challenging the legality the case.
During hearing, petitioners’ lawyer Advocate AF Hasan Ariff told the court that the case was filed against Shahidul under section 57 of the ICT Act illegally even though the section was abolished after formulation of the Digital Security Act.
He also prayed to the court to stay the investigation of the case.
Attorney General Mahbubey Alam opposed the petition saying that the investigation against Shahidul cannot be disrupted until the lower court starts the trial proceedings of the case.
On March 3, Shahidul filed a writ petition challenging the legality of the case, in which he was imprisoned for 107 days.
In the petition, he sought stay on the proceedings saying that it was filed against him “in violation of his fundamental rights and by abusing the process”.
On August 5 last year, Shahidul, also the founder of Drik Gallery and Pathshala South Asian Media Institute, was picked up from his Dhanmondi home during a widespread demonstration for safe roads.
Police lodged the case against the 63-year-old under section 57 of the ICT Act and produced him before a Dhaka court the following day.
On November 15 last year, HC granted bail to Shahidul, while he was released from Dhaka jail on November 20.