'Business partner behind kidnap'
Businessman Aniruddha Kumar Roy, who returned home nearly three months after his abduction, yesterday alleged that one of his business partners might be behind the incident, an allegation his partner rejected outright.
In a statement to the media, Aniruddha, managing director of RMM Group, said his business partner Mohiuddin Ahmed Mahin and his men did whatever possible to grab the three firms he had established.
The firms -- RMM Leather Industries Ltd, RMM Knit Clothing Ltd and RMM Sweater Ltd -- are worth around Tk 150 crore, he mentioned.
However, Mohiuddin, who claimed to be the founding chairman of the three firms, said he was not involved in Aniruddha's abduction, and refuted all the allegations against him.
“I am the founding chairman of all the three firms. The accusations made against me are completely baseless, fabricated and motivated. All this has been done to harass me socially,” said Mohiuddin, also chairman of Bangladesh Finished Leather, Leather goods and Footwear Exporters Association (BFLLFEA).
Mystery still shrouds Aniruddha's abduction as a number of BFLLFEA leaders believe Aniruddha's rivalry with Mohiuddin wasn't so intense that he would abduct him. They further said Aniruddha is hiding something about the abductors.
After keeping him confined to an unknown location for 81 days, the kidnappers dropped him off near his Gulshan home around 3:30am on Friday.
Talking to this newspaper over the phone yesterday, Aniruddha said his abductors didn't blindfold him while he was whisked away from Gulshan in a microbus.
He couldn't see anything outside as the vehicle had tinted glasses, and he was asked to keep his head down.
The businessman further said he had no idea where he was taken.
“I feared that I wouldn't be able to see the world again, breathe again.”
He couldn't say how long it took to reach the room on the first floor of a two-storey building where he was kept.
“Can you feel anything when the fear of death grips you?” he questioned.
In reply to a query, Aniruddha said the abductors often came to the room without covering their faces. They behaved well and gave him food regularly.
Contacted, Assistant Commissioner of Gulshan Zone of Dhaka Metropolitan Police Rafiqul Islam said they talked to Anuruddha but he couldn't say anything specific about the abductors.
Asked about Aniruddha's allegations against his business partner, Rafiqul said he was unaware of it.
He, however, said they would look into the matter.
Giving an account of his abduction on August 27, Aniruddha said that soon after he emerged from a meeting at Union Bank in Gulshan 1, a man greeted him and wanted to know his identity.
On confirmation of his identity, the man along with six to seven others forced him into a microbus. They all seemed to be professionals, he added.
The incident was captured on a CCTV camera. But surprisingly, law enforcers could not trace the kidnappers even in the last 81 days.
“Their main target was to ruin my business by keeping me confined for a long period.
“The firearms they carried might be dummies. But it's very alarming that they have the capacity to abduct someone from a place like Gulshan,” he said.
In his statement, Aniruddha alleged that during his absence, his business partner had tried to harm his ventures in many ways such as deposition of Tk 5 crore in his personal bank account instead of the company's account and removal of important documents from his office room.
“As chairman of the BFLLFEA, Mohiuddin also tried to impede the approval of a shipment certificate for one of my firms.”
"After abducting me, they [the kidnappers] had pressed me to give information about all my properties,” Aniruddha alleged.
He urged the prime minister to intervene and take steps so that he gets justice and security.
The statement signed by Aniruddha was issued from his office at Bangla Motor in the city yesterday morning.