Law enforcers have arrested seven more people allegedly for trying to create anarchy in the country by spreading rumours on social media over the student agitation for road safety.
With them, at least 17 people have been arrested under the controversial section 57 of the ICT act for their activities on social media.
Of the arrestees, 12 were arrested in Dhaka in six cases filed with Ramna, Uttara West, Rupnagar and Dhanmondi police stations, four in a case with Chittagong's Kotwali Police Station and one with Sadar Police Station in Sirajganj.
The arrestees were trying to turn the student demonstration into a violent one by sharing various provocative contents, posts and going live on Facebook, claimed law enforcers.
Seven people were arrested in Dhaka and Sirajganj on Tuesday.
A team of Rapid Action Battalion arrested Akhtaruzzaman Tony, 22, Asadullah Al Galib, 22, and Munim Sarkar, 23, in the capital's Dhanmondi on Tuesday night, said Rabiul Islam, operations officer of Rab-2.
During their primary interrogation, the arrestees admitted that they are Chhatra Shibir activists and that they uploaded provocative posts on Facebook through mobile phones to instigate and divert student protesters as well as deteriorate law and order, claimed a Rab statement.
The force also claimed to have seized a laptop, SIMs and a form for joining Shibir from their possession.
The arrestees were handed over to Dhanmondi police in connection with a case filed under the ICT act, said the Rab official.
The cyber crime unit of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) arrested three others -- Tauhidul Islam Tushar, 24, Mohammad Waliullah, 28, and Ehsan Uddin Ejaz, 18, -- from different areas of the capital on Tuesday on charge of spreading rumours on social media.
They were shown arrested in a case filed with Ramna Police Station, Additional Deputy Commissioner Najmul Islam of the unit told The Daily Star.
Their laptops, mobile phones and memory cards were seized and information on their Facebook IDs was also collected, the official said.
Yesterday, a Dhaka court placed Waliullah on a five-day remand while Ejaz and Tushar were placed on four days each. The court passed the order after inspector Rafiqul Islam, investigation officer of the case, produced them before it and sought a 10-day remand for each of them.
Arrested by the unit on Monday, Mahbubur Rahman, Alamgir Hossain, and Saidul Islam are currently on a five-day remand.
“Quizzing the trio we got sensational information and links of many others who spread rumours on social media,” said ADC Nazmul, adding that they were conducting drives to arrest them.
In Sirajganj, arrestee Shakhawat Hossain Shakil Mahamud, a lawyer at the district court, was sent to jail on Tuesday after being arrested on charge of spreading rumour on Facebook to instigate student protesters.
Shakil allegedly shared a fake post regarding the army, said Mojaharul Islam, officer-in-charge of Sirajganj DB police.
A Chittagong court yesterday placed each of the four youths, arrested on Monday, on one-day remand in connection with an ICT case.
They are Maruf Hossain, Aziur Rahman, Imdadul Haque Anik and Abdullah Al Shahed. Two of them are Chhatra Federation leaders.
On August 4, Rab arrested actress Quazi Nawshaba Ahmed in Dhaka's Uttara while police arrested Shahed Akter in Rupnagar and DB arrested noted photojournalist Shahidul Alam on Monday over similar charge.
Meanwhile, a random post has been doing the rounds on Facebook since Monday, requesting people to share information on 30 people with law enforcers. The post claimed that the 30 spread rumours to make the student movement violent.
The post also shared a telephone number and email address belonging to the cyber crime investigating centre of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).
However on Tuesday, the Centre issued a statement on Facebook, saying the post was not uploaded by it.
“But citizens are always welcome to share with us any information on any sort of cybercrime,” the Centre said in the statement.
Asked about taking action against those who shared the post on Monday, Molla Nazrul Islam, special superintendent of CID's organised crime unit, told The Daily Star yesterday that anyone could provide law enforcers with information on violence.
“We have primarily checked the post and photos of some of those 30 people and found their involvement in instigating violence through social media,” said Nazrul, adding that they were working further on the matter.