Husband abducted for me: Rizwana

Award-winning environmental lawyer Rizwana Hasan claims people she annoyed with her activism were behind the abduction of her husband AB Siddique.

Published : 16 April 2014, 03:34 PM
Updated : 17 April 2014, 09:07 AM

Armed assailants waylaid Siddique’s car at Narayanganj’s Bhuigarh and took him away in a van around 3pm Wednesday.

Born and raised in Narayanganj, Siddique was returning from a garment factory at Fatulla.

“Businesses like Bashundhara, Modhumoti, Ashiyan as well as the Ship Breakers Association are very angry because of my work,” said Hasan, the executive director of Bangladesh Environmental Lawyers Association (BELA).

“Maybe it was them who kidnapped my husband,” she told reporters at Bhuigarh on the Dhaka-Narayanganj link road, the scene from where her husband was abducted.
Policemen were also present there.
“He doesn’t have enemies. We also don’t have a lot of money that they would detain him for ransom.”
She also said her husband’s two cell phones were left behind in the car.
Hasan, a winner of the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award in 2012, is vocal against environmental damages.
She has been fighting several legal battles for the sake of the environment in Bangladesh.
Her husband was executive director of Fatulla’s Hamid Fashions, owned by State Minister for Power Nasrul Hamid Bipu.
The factory lay shut for several years after a labour unrest led by Jatiya Sramik League’s Fatulla unit president Kausar Ahmed Palash.
He began working in the factory in February. Earlier, he worked for Narayanganj businessman and former FBCCI Vice President Mohammad Ali. Ali was a Jatiya Party MP in the 1980s.
“Please raid the torture cells in Narayanganj, maybe you’ll find him there!” Hasan pleaded with Syed Nurul Islam, Narayanganj’s Superintendant of Police (SP), who was there with her at the place of Siddique’s abduction.
Islam said: “But RAB have already closed them.”
“I want my husband back safe and sound,’ she said.

Meanwhile, BNP chief Khaleda Zia has expressed “concerns” over the abduction. She demanded the government rescue Siddique and return him to his family without delay.

In a statement on Wednesday night, Khaleda said the incident showed the “deteriorating law and order situation” in Bangladesh. “No-one is safe,” she claimed.

The BNP chief offered sympathies to Siddique’s family and prayed for his safe return.