How a medical student ended up in Arav's 'crime world'

Suraiya Akter Keya was charged alongside Arav with the 2018 murder of policeman Mamun Imran Khan

Golam Mortuja
Published : 19 March 2023, 09:44 PM
Updated : 19 March 2023, 09:44 PM

Suraiya Akter Keya, one of the many wives of Arav Khan, a key suspect in the much-publicised murder of a police officer, had come to Dhaka to study medicine.

The daughter of a lowly farmer, her relationship with Arav led her into his 'world of crime', according to her father.

Keya did not complete her studies. Instead, she was charged alongside Arav with the policeman's murder. Her father also revealed that Arav 'secretly fled' the country after securing bail in the case.

Arav came into the spotlight recently after opening a jewellery store in the United Arab Emirates. Many Bangladeshi celebrities, including cricketer Shakib Al Hasan, actress Prarthana Fardin Dighi and social media star Ashraful Alom aka Hero Alom flew out to Dubai for the store's inauguration at Arav's invitation.

The event caused a stir back home as just prior to it, police revealed that Arav was none other than Rabiul Islam, a fugitive charged with the murder of police officer Mamun Imran Khan. He took the alias Arav Khan and travelled to Dubai on an Indian passport.

Arav and Rabiul aren't his only aliases either as he has gone by various other names at different points. His father came from humble means and worked at a hotel in Dhaka.

Arav went on to make a fortune, but the source of his wealth is dubious.

As many as nine arrest warrants have been issued against Arav in his native village of Kotalipara in Gopalganj. But the number of cases against him is higher.

Arav is known to have married at least 20 women in his village, with local representatives attending six of those weddings, according to a village official.

Keya was one of them. Her father Abul Kalam, a native of Meherpur, said he knew Arav by one of his aliases, 'Apon'.

Like his son-in-law, his daughter has also been implicated in several cases, including the murder of policeman Mamun for which she spent three and a half years in jail.

Ruing his misfortune, Kalam said, "Back then, I went to jail in a case related to land acquisition. My daughter came to Dhaka with her mother. They lived in Savar's EPZ area.

At first, they used to visit Kalam in jail. Gradually, their relationship faded away.

"I wanted my daughter to pursue her education. In prison, I heard that she was getting married to a wealthy man's son. But that spelt the end of my family."

Apon wooed his daughter by claiming to be the 'son of a rich man', according to Kalam. After the marriage, word of his other wives reached Kalam.

Kalam spent 12 and a half years in prison. During that time his wife divorced him and married another man.

While he was serving time, his daughter Keya was also incarcerated. After his release, Kalam learnt that his daughter, with whom he is now estranged, married another expatriate and was living in Malaysia.


The case's investigation officer Sheikh Mahbubur Rahman submitted his report to a Dhaka court in March 2021.

In the chargesheet over Mamun's murder, police said Arav aka Rabiul Islam used to lead a gang that blackmailed rich people. The gang sought to confine Rahmat Ullah and take 'obscene' photos of him with girls in order to blackmail him. Accordingly, they organised a sham birthday party and invited Rahmat to a house in Banani.

On Jul 8, 2018, Mamun, an inspector at the police's Special Branch, accompanied his friend Rahmat to the 'party' where he was ultimately killed.

Mamun, the youngest of six siblings from Nawabganj's Rajrampur, studied at Jahangirnagar University.

After joining the police force in 2005, he also served in peacekeeping missions. At the time of his murder, he was working at the Special Branch Police Training School in Dhaka's Shantinagar.

A bachelor, Mamun lived with his elder brother, Jahangir, in Sabujbagh. From a young age, Mamun had a penchant for acting. He also acted in a few television dramas.

According to the case dossier, Mamun met Rahmat, a diploma engineer, while working on a crime drama for TV and the two soon struck up a friendship. This was also how they met a woman, who was a member of Arav's ring.

The woman told Keya that it would possible to make big money by ensnaring Rahmat. They soon set about staging a birthday party and invited Rahmat to a house in Banani.

When Rahmat and Mamun reached the address, the woman came out to meet them with two other people, whom she introduced as her sister and sister-in-law.

After the two men entered the house, they noticed that there weren't arrangements for a birthday party. Rahmat questioned the woman about it but then Keya interjected. "Our parties are just like this every day. You'll see soon," she told them.

Once Keya left the room, Swapan, Didar, Atiq and Mizan entered and the plot to entrap Rahmat was underway.

They accused Mamun and Rahmat of coming to the house with 'ill-intentions'. When Mamun protested, the four men began beating him. One of them called for his hands and feet to be tied up and said they would take pictures of him with the women. Swapan, Atiq and Didar then held Mamun down as his limbs were bound.

When Mizan grabbed Mamun's face, the policeman reacted by biting his hand. Mamun then took blows to the back of his neck. He fell unconscious after being kicked hard by Atiq as Rahmat, who was also tied up, looked on.

Around 12 am, Swapan realised that Mamun's arms and legs began stiffening up when he, along with Atiq and Didar, stabbed the policeman's toe with a sharp object on Rabiul's advice, according to the case dossier. But as he didn't bleed, it became apparent to them that Mamum had died.

Swapan and Didar then called Rabiul and asked him to bring a big trolley or bag. Around 7 am, Swapan, Didar and Atiq took Mamun's body down in a lift and placed it in Rahmat's car.

They drove off with the body in the boot before stopping near a bamboo grove in Kaliganj's Ulukhola. Atiq and Swapan then took the body to the bamboo grove and set it on fire to conceal evidence.

Three days later, locals discovered Mamun's burnt remains in a forested area next to the Rayerdia Road and reported the matter to the Ulokhola Police Outpost.

Later, police retrieved the body, which family members identified as that of Mamun based on the pants and belt he was wearing.

Rahmat was the first to be arrested by the Dhaka Metropolitan Police. Keya, Mizan Sheikh and two young girls were later apprehended. Later, the confessions of three of the suspects shed light on the mystery of Mamun's death.

Rahmat was driving the car with Didar, Atiq, Swapan and Mizan inside. The leader of the gang, Rabiul, was ahead of them on a motorcycle.

Kalam says his daughter Keya is currently abroad. Asked about her whereabouts, Haran-or-Rashid, additional commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police, said, "We don't have any information on whether Keya is in the country or not. We are looking into it.”


According to law enforcement, Arav ran a 'fraud and blackmailing' ring in Dhaka using the name Apon.

He used to rent houses in posh neighbourhoods in the city and lured wealthy people there before blackmailing them with photos of their 'intimate moments' with girls. Mamun was killed in one such house.

Arav used women from acting and modelling backgrounds for his schemes.

Harun, the chief of the DMP's Detective Branch, says they have received 12 arrest warrants for Arav aka Rabiul. He had previously been implicated in several cases.

Inspector Md Zakaria of Kotalipara Police Station said Sohag Molla, who went on to take the alias Rabiul, had nine arrest warrants related to charges of abusing women, rape, murder, theft and robbery. But there is no case against him with the police station.

The homes of Arav and Mazharul Alam Panna, chairman of Kotalipara's Hiran Union, are in the same village.

"Several cases have been filed against Rabiul aka Sohag by his wives," he said.

After he was initially identified as a suspect in the murder of Mamun, he was let off at the behest of a high-ranking official, according to police.

“He sent an impostor to jail in his place," said Harun. By the time police figured out that the real culprit remained at large, Arav had already fled using a fake Indian passport, he added.

[Writing in English by Turaj Ahmad]