Voice for justice gets louder | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, March 28, 2016 / LAST MODIFIED: 03:37 AM, March 28, 2016

Tonu Murder

Voice for justice gets louder

With no visible progress in the investigation, protests continued across the country yesterday, demanding justice for Sohagi Jahan Tonu who was killed inside Comilla Cantonment area on March 20.

Students of Comilla Victoria College, where Tonu used to study, blocked the Dhaka-Chittagong highway at Nandanpur area from 11:00am to 2:00pm.

They also brought out a procession participated by members of different local socio-political organisations.

A faction of Gonojagoron Mancha, led by its spokesperson Imran H Sarkar, marched to Comilla from the capital in the morning and joined the locals in a rally there.

At the rally, the Mancha demanded an "unequivocal statement" from the Prime Minister, condemning the incident.

A second-year student of history and a theatre activist at Victoria College, 19-year-old Tonu was found dead about 400 yards away from their house inside Comilla Cantonment on the night of March 20, according to her family members.

Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal yesterday said law enforcers through investigation would unearth "the truth".

"It is not appropriate to talk [over the issue] before the investigation ends. After investigation, we hopefully will be able to tell you what really had happened there," he told a private television channel.

Superintendent Shah Abid Hossain of Comilla police yesterday said they were yet to arrest anyone in connection with the killing.

The army authority that earlier announced full co-operation into the investigation has handed over some "vital pieces of evidence" to the investigators, he said.

Police also visited the crime scene, the SP added.

Meanwhile, Officer-in-Charge AKM Manjur Alam of the Detective Branch (DB) of Police in Comilla told BBC

Bangla yesterday that they were yet to receive the autopsy report.

The case was handed over to the DB on Sunday.

Two delegations of rights bodies Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) and Bangladesh National Women Lawyers Association visited the crime scene yesterday. They also talked to Tonu's family.

The district police chief on Saturday had told BBC Bangla that they were facing "some limitations" while probing the murder, as the crime scene is in a restricted area like cantonment.


The Gonojagoron Mancha held a brief rally at Shahbagh in the capital before starting the march to Comilla at 10:00am.

Activists of left-leaning student bodies Bangladesh Chhatra Union and Samajtantrik Chhatra Front joined the programme.

After reaching Comilla town in the afternoon, they held a rally.

Speaking there, Imran H Sarkar said Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina took to the street demanding justice for Yasmin.

"We want her to take steps over Tonu murder incident as well," he said.

The Mancha also announced hour-long strikes at all educational institutions of the country and formation of a human chain from 12:00pm on Wednesday.


BNP leaders yesterday criticised the government and Sheikh Hasina for "their silence" over the murder of Tonu.

"Tonu's killers feel encouraged as the government high-ups including the prime minister are silent over the issue," BNP Standing Committee Member ASM Hannan Shah said at a human chain in front the Jatiya Press Club.

At another human chain in the same venue, another BNP standing committee member, Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain, alleged people are not safe anywhere in the country.

The killings of people like Tonu and journalist couple Sagar-Runi happened due to the absence of good governance in the country, he said.


Dhaka University students formed a human chain at TSC on the campus and blocked the Shahbagh intersection for around half an hour in the afternoon, demanding immediate arrest of the killer(s) of Tonu.

Students of East West University, North South University and Stamford University also brought out processions, protesting the murder.

In Chittagong, several thousand people formed a human chain and staged demonstrations in front of the Chittagong Press Club in the afternoon, demanding capital punishment for the culprit(s).

Similar protest programmes were held in Mymensingh, Narayanganj and Pirojpur.

[Our correspondents in Comilla, Mymensingh, Pirojpur, Narayanganj and Chittagong contributed to this story.]

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