‘MP assaults principal of a college’
A Rajshahi MP has allegedly assaulted a college principal at his office last week.
Lawmaker Omar Faruk Chowdhury from Rajshahi-1 constituency, however, refutes the allegation.
Talking to this correspondent, he claimed some college principals, who met him at his chamber on July 7, got locked into a brawl, and it was he who stopped them.
However, Asaduzzaman Asad, former general secretary of Rajshahi District Awami League, said he visited the injured principal of Rajbari Degree College, Salim Reza, at his home on Monday and saw bruises on different parts of his body. He added that the lawmaker was giving the ruling party a bad name.
Meanwhile, the National University yesterday formed a committee to investigate the allegation.
Molla Mahfuz Al-Hossain, registrar of National University, is the convener of the three-member committee, which was asked to visit the area of the alleged incident as soon as possible.
Some people, who are aware of what happened at the MP's chamber, said at least seven college principals and vice principals were meeting him at his building Theme Omor Plaza.
At one point, the lawmaker became very angry as he did not like Salim Reza's response to a question regarding a personal matter and hit him at first with bare hands and then with a stick.
The others present in the room later took Salim outside.
The sources said witnesses to the incident, including the victim himself, would keep mum fearing reprisals from the MP's men.
Orthopaedic specialist Sayed Ahmed, who has a chamber in Lakkhipur area of Rajshahi city, treated Salim later that day. He told The Daily Star that the injuries were serious.
He added that he knew Salim as they are from the same village.
However, as a report over the alleged torture was published by a national newspaper yesterday, Salim wrote on Facebook that the MP had not assaulted him and what really happened was that the teachers meeting the MP engaged in an argument among themselves.
MP Omar's actions and comments made headlines multiple times before.
After the national election in 2018, his men took position at the two entry points of a village and barred all types of vehicular movement through the village because many of the locals did not vote for him.
The same year, it was reported in the media that ruling party activists assaulted a college principal in front of the MP on August 19.
Principal Salim Reza yesterday did not respond to this correspondent's request for a comment.
A reporter who had met him earlier said the principal had a black eye and injury marks on his right hand, stomach and back.
Imrul Haq, vice-principal of Godagari Degree College, who was present at the MP's chamber that day, said the lawmaker became angry at the principal over an issue. "But nothing as bad as an assault happened."
Omar yesterday said some individuals were out to put the blame on him because of an "internal political rivalry".
The MP late last night said he will hold a press conference about the matter today. Principal Salim is likely to be present at the event.