Members of Rapid Action Battalion in a pre-dawn raid seize a large number of sharp weapons, jihadi books, leaflets and bombs from a mess controlled by Islami Chhatra Shibir in Sapura area of Rajshahi city. Photo: Star
Law enforcers yesterday busted a den of Islami Chhatra Shibir in Rajshahi city and arrested 36 activists in connection with the Monday's attack on policemen.
A bomb, 19 Chinese axes, bomb making materials, two laptops, Jihadi books, banners, posters, leaflets and many secret documents of the student body associated with the Jamaat-e-Islami were also seized.
Among the arrestees, 26 confessed that they had been directly involved in the attack that caused injury to four policemen, said Rajshahi Metropolitan Police Commissioner SM Moniruzzaman.
Acting on intelligence reports, a security team raided Shibir's rented house at Sopura at around 12:00noon. Police later joined them, said Rab Director Lt Col Anwar Lotif Khan.
In the raid of over three hours, the law enforcers discovered that the house was a den of activists of Shibir's Rajshahi Polytechnic Institute unit, he said.
Police arrested eight people at the residence. Based on information extracted from them, law enforcers arrested 14 other Shibir men from a nearby dormitory for students and six others from another dormitory at Sopura. Seven Shibir activists were also held from Binodpur.
Of the 36, two were identified from TV footage and newspaper photographs. Of them, Asadul Islam of Bagmara, a student of Rajshahi Polytechnic Institute (RPI), confessed to hitting Sub-inspector Jahangir Alam with bricks on Monday.
Shibir leaders provide the activists with necessary transport and food allowances and weapons to join processions and launch attacks, he said.
Another is Zakirul Hossain Rajib who was picked up in a separate raid at Rajshahi College Gymnasium around 3:00pm.
The arrestees gave details of some other key attackers who are yet to be detained. Shibir cadre Shahidul Islam, an employee of Islami Bank Limited Hospital at Laxmipur, was seen in video footage and photographs.
He had an orange-colour shirt on and beat up the police officer with his helmet, and took away the pistol.
Monir Rahman Gias, a student of RPI, was wearing a yellow cap and blue T-shirt during the attack. He hit Jahangir with bricks and took out his pistol from the holster.
Former general secretary of Shibir's Shah Makhdum thana unit Jasim Uddin was wearing a white T-shirt. Another three attackers are Rakib, Russell and John.