Tied to a concrete pole and surrounded by a group of villagers, Sagor Mia looked totally hapless and exhausted. But every time he tried to close his eyes, a man hit him violently with a piece of wood. Some other men, standing nearby, kept hurling abuse at the teenage boy.
Sagor repeatedly screamed for help, cried for water and begged for his life. But the group showed no mercy. The torture continued.
And at one point, he collapsed and died of his injuries later.
The 18-year-old's only “fault” was he allegedly tried to steal a water pump at a hatchery in Char Sreerampur village of Mymensingh's Gauripur. And for this, he had to die this cruel death allegedly at the hands of the hatchery owner, Akkas Ali, and some of his employees.
Apparently, one of the onlookers filmed the torture on a mobile phone and shared it on social media. The video went viral.
The incident, which harks back to the gruesome murder of teenage boy Samiul Islam Rajon in 2015, happened on Monday morning. Later in the day, Sagor's body was dumped into the bushes near the hatchery. Police recovered it around 11:00am yesterday.
A witness, wishing not to be named, said he saw Sagor, who used to collect scrap, being assaulted by Qaiyum, an employee at the hatchery, on Akkas' instructions near the hatchery around 6:00am on Monday.
At one point, Sagor crumpled to the ground. At this, the men untied his hands and left the place with him in a CNG-run auto-rickshaw. They said they were taking him to Mymensingh Medical College Hospital, said the witness.
However, the victim, son of Shipon Mia, a hawker from Natokghar Lane Railway Colony in Mymensingh town, was never taken to the hospital. Instead, his body was dumped into the bushes sometime later.
Quoting locals, Delwar Ahmed, officer-in-charge of Gauripur Police Station, said the employees of Gauchhia Hatchery caught Sagor while he was allegedly trying to steal a water pump at the hatchery around 5.00am on Monday.
On information, Akkas Ali went to the spot and asked his men to tie Sagor to the pole. Later, they beat him up mercilessly.
Sagor was fainting time and again, but they did not stop the torture, he said.
Sagor died of his injuries and the torturers threw his body in the bushes. Later, the culprits went into hiding, said the OC, adding that the law enforcers were raiding several places to arrest the killers.
Shahidul Haque Sarker, chairman of local Douhakhola Union Parishad, said he informed police about the dead body after one of the villagers discovered it around 10:00am yesterday.
Quoting locals, the chairman also accused Akkas and his men of killing the boy and dumping the body into the bushes.
Talking to this correspondent, Sagor's father Shipon Mia said he had been living along with his family at Natokghar Lane Railway Colony for years.
He said Sagor, his second child, went out of their home around 4:00am on Monday. He took his van with him, saying he was going to collect scraps. He never returned.
Shipon said his son was innocent and demanded justice. “My son is a scrap collector. He was not a thief.”
Sagor's elder sister Fatema Akhter said, “We want immediate and exemplary punishment to the culprits. We don't want anything else.”
The body was sent to Mymensingh Medical College Hospital morgue for autopsy.
Shipon filed a murder case against 12 people, including Akkas, with Gouripur Police Station.
On July 8 in 2015, thirteen-year-old Rajon was beaten to death by some brutes in Kumargaon Bus Stand area of Sylhet Sadar upazila.
His “crime”, they claimed, was trying to steal a rickshaw van. One of culprits filmed the murder incident on a mobile phone and shared it on social media. The sickening torture video shook the nation to its core and stirred outcries in the social network and the mainstream media.