Investigation report on Bangladesh LGBT rights activist Xulhaz murder delayed

Police have again failed to meet the deadline for the report into the 2016 murders of LGBT activist Xulhaz Mannan and his friend Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy.

Published : 17 August 2017, 09:34 AM
Updated : 17 August 2017, 09:44 AM

Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Sajjadur Rahman set Sept 25 for the report on Wednesday after police failed to hit the 16th deadline, said court police official Nurul Islam.

Detective Branch (DB) Inspector Bahauddin Farooqi is assigned to investigate the murder case, while the same department's Inspector Nurul Afsar is assigned to the arms case filed over the incident.

Two suspects, Shariful Islam Keramot and Rashidunnabi Bhuiyan Tipu have been arrested in connection with the cases.

One of the suspects has confessed to his involvement in the killings.

On Apr 25 last year, Xulhaz was hacked to death by suspected Islamits militants inside his apartment at Dhaka’s Kalabagan along with his friend, theatre activist Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy.

Mahbub Rabbi Tonoy

The attack was one of a series of militant-linked assassinations of secular activists and religious minorities and was claimed by the Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS).

The attackers also injured a security guard of the building.

A patrolling policeman, who tried to stop the assailants, was also injured in the process. The assistant sub-inspector managed to snatch a bag containing two firearms, ammunition and a mobile phone from the assailants.

That same night Xulhaz’s brother filed a murder case against five to six unidentified suspects at the Kalabagan Police Station. A separate case was filed over the attack on the policeman and the firearms confiscated.

Xulhaz was a cousin of former foreign minister and ruling Awami League leader Dipu Moni.

An International Relations graduate from the Dhaka University, the 35-year-old joined the US embassy in 2007 before taking up what would turn out to be his last post at the USAID.

He was also the editor of 'Roopbaan', Bangladesh’s first LGBT magazine.

Tonoy, 26, was involved with the Lok Natyadal theatre group. He taught drama to children at an organisation 'Peoples Theatre'.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher