POST TIME: 11 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Jatri Kalyan’s Mozammel charged in explosives case
Staff Reporter

Jatri Kalyan’s Mozammel charged in explosives case

The police filed a petition in a court yesterday, charging Mozammel Haque, secretary general of Jatri Kalyan Samity, in an explosives case after arresting him on charges of extortion. However, the explosives case FIR does not contain Mozammel’s name in the list of the accused. The chief metropolitan magistrate’s Court fixed September 13 for a hearing on the petition in the presence of the investigating officer (IO) and Mozammel Haque.

Kafrul police station sub-inspector Kazi Raihanur Rahman, who is also the investigating officer of the case, filed the petition at the chief metropolitan magistrate’s court, Dhaka. He also sought Haque's 10-day remand for interrogation. The original case had been filed on February 4.

Shikder Md Shamim Hossain, officer-in-charge of Kafrul police station, has confirmed the development. Jatri Kalyan Samity publishes statistics on road and transport-related accidents and other public interest issues. It regularly makes public data on road crash fatalities during the Eid vacations.

The association describes itself as a non-profit, non-political and passenger welfare organisation. Yesterday, Biju Akhter Chowdhury, wife of Mozammel Haque, held a press conference, but was unable to speak as she broke down. The press meet was organized at the National Press Club on behalf of Mozammel Haque to demand his release.

Jatri Kalyan Samity sought Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s intervention to ensure the release of its secretary general. It also demanded action against those who have “implicated Haque in a false case”.

Shamsuddin Chowdhury, a member of the executive committee of the association, announced the demands at the press conference.

He claimed some "miscreants" in the transport sector, who have  unleashed anarchy over 160 million people in the country, were threatening Mozammel Haque as he exposed their misdeeds. He said Haque was implicated in a false case because he could not be stopped from fighting for passengers' rights.

Mozammel Haque was arrested on September 6 in an extortion case filed against him by Md Dulal at Mirpur police station. The law enforcers produced Haque before the court, which granted a day’s police remand for him.

Later, the court sent Mozammel Haque to jail custody after rejecting his bail petition and also the police prayer for the extension of his remand to five days.

Md Dulal, the complainant in the extortion case, said he had signed a computer-typed paper without knowing what it contained.

The Mirpur unit president and secretary of the Bus-Minibus Sramik Committee were with him when the case was filed, Dulal told a private TV channel and a news outlet.

It was later revealed that the computer-typed paper was in fact the case statement. Dulal is a lineman who can only sign, but cannot read or write. Dulal maintains the serial numbers of buses near the entrance to the National Zoo in Mirpur.

Addressing the press conference, Sultana Kamal, a noted human rights activist, condemned the arrest and demanded that Mozammel be released immediately and unconditionally.

Sultana Kamal said that the Passengers' Welfare Association only tells people how they can return home safely after going out.

The arrest of the leader of such an organisation is matter of shock, she said. The incident belied the government’s claim of strengthening democracy, she added.