A Narayanganj court yesterday placed five members of Rapid Action Battalion-11, arrested on Tuesday night, on an eight-day remand in connection with the sensational seven-murder in Narayanganj late in April.
The five told the court that they had been forced to get involved in the abduction and killing by their superior officers -- Lt Col Tareque Sayeed Mohammad, Maj Arif Hossain and Lt Commander MM Rana -- who had been arrested earlier, court sources said.
The five Rab personnel were Lance Nayek Hira Miah and Belal Hossain, constable Emdadul Haque, sepoy Abu Tayab and radio operator Arif Hossain.
Hira told the court that Maj Arif had forced him at gun point to dump the corpses in the Shitalakkhya river, according to the sources.
The sources said all five of them had played roles in the abduction and murder.
The Rab men were arrested at different places, said Khandker Mahid Uddin, Narayanganj superintendent of police, but Rab in a press statement claimed that they were handed over to Narayanganj police.
Rab-11 had found their involvement in the murders in a “shadow investigation” that the elite force was conducting, claimed Capt Maqsudul Alam, assistant director of the legal and media wing of Rab.
With the five, investigators have so far arrested eight Rab-11 personnel in connection with the gruesome murder.
Narayanganj city panel mayor Nazrul Islam, his driver and three associates, and senior lawyer Chandan Sarker and his driver were abducted separately but around the same time on April 27 from Dhaka-Narayanganj Link Road.
Their bodies were found floating in the Shitalakkhya a few days later.
Yesterday, the court of Senior Judicial Magistrate Chandni Rupam passed the remand order in the case filed by Selina Islam, wife of Nazrul, after investigation officer Mamunur Rashid Mandol of the Detective Branch of police in Narayanganj produced the five before the court.
From the court the arrestees were taken to the police lines in Masdair area for quizzing, said a source inside the district police.
Rab men's involvement in the killings came to light when Nazrul's father-in-law Shahidul Islam alleged that some Rab personnel had abducted and killed Nazrul in exchange for Tk 6 crore from ward councillor Nur Hossain and his associates.
Amid an uproar over the allegation, the High Court on May 5 ordered the government to keep the elite force away from the probe.
It also directed the government to form a seven-member committee led by an additional secretary of the public administration ministry to investigate the brutal murders.
Nur Hossain, the prime accused in the case, was arrested in Kolkata, India, on June 14 for intruding into the country. He is now in an Indian jail and is facing trial for illegal entry.