Lawyer tortured, sent to jail
A lawyer who had been missing for a week was brought to a Dhaka court by police, shown arrested, and sent to jail yesterday.
Abu Hossain Rajon was picked up on the morning of January 22, and taken to Hatirjheel Police Station, said his family members.
When the family members met Rajon on the court premises yesterday, he told them that he had been beaten up and tortured in police custody.
"He was battered from the feet up. They beat him everywhere, all over his legs and back. He said that he was taken from the Hatirjheel Police Station to the DB headquarters every day to be tortured," said Rajon's younger brother Mohiuddin Khan,.
Rajon was not taken in front of a magistrate at the court, his family alleged. He was brought to the premises, kept in the court's prison cell and taken directly to jail.
"One of our relatives had stood watch over the Hatirjheel police station the whole day [on Saturday]. He saw Rajon being taken out around 5:00pm and being brought back around 11:00pm," said Mohiuddin.
"Rajon told us that every day he was taken out for interrogation, they would go through the contact list on his phone and question him about them," said Mohiuddin.
"My family had gone [to the police station] with food and clothes, hoping to give those to him. The duty officer kept insisting that he was not there, but Rajon heard our voices and called out," the brother told this correspondent. Rajon had reportedly said, "Sir, I am here, tell them I am here!"
The family also managed to collect a photo of Rajon inside the cell at the police station. "My father is a retired police officer, and so he has connections," said Mohiuddin.
The officer-in-charge of Hatirjheel police station could not be reached for comments in spite of repeated attempts over the phone. Sub-inspector Sharmin told this newspaper that nobody named Abu Hossain Rajon was arrested.
"My brother is accused of causing violence and being involved in anti-state activities. But he is into none of that. He is a lawyer and worked as a human rights activist in our village home in Chatkhil of Noakhali," said Mohiuddin.
Mohiuddin said Rajon was picked up from in front of Ad-Deen Hospital in Moghbazar. "I spoke to the people in the area and learned this from witnesses," he said. "When we saw him at the court, he was wearing the same clothes as the day he was picked up."