A migrant worker and his wife died in an apparent murder-suicide. His family didn't know he came back to Bangladesh

But his in-laws knew he'd returned from Saudi Arabia, with some claiming he was in debt as mystery swirls around his and his wife's deaths

Senior Correspondentbdnews24.com
Published : 27 Sept 2022, 09:58 AM
Updated : 27 Sept 2022, 09:58 AM

The family of Abdullah Al Noman, a Saudi Arabia-based migrant worker who was found dead along with his wife in Dhaka's Mohammadpur, was unaware of the fact that he had come back home. But his in-laws knew he had returned.

After arriving in Dhaka on Sept 9, the 28-year-old rented a flat on Mohammadpur's Babar Road and began living there with his wife, Shamima.

On Sunday, police recovered the bodies of the young couple from the flat in what was suspected to be a case of murder-suicide.

It was only then that Noman's family found out that he had come back from the Gulf kingdom, police learnt after speaking to the families of the couple on Monday.

Based on a preliminary investigation, police suspect Noman died by suicide after killing Shamima.

Consequently, two cases have been initiated in connection with the incident -- one involving murder and the other relating to an unnatural death.

Shamima's elder brother Shamim Ahmed, a car driver, said Noman went straight to his village in Bhola on his return from Saudi Arabia.

However, instead of going to see his parents, Noman called Shamima on the phone and met her on Sept 13, said Shamim, a resident of Uttara. They left for Dhaka later that day.

"After boarding a launch for Dhaka, Shamima called me and said that they were going there for a visit and would be back in a few days.”

Shamim added that he spoke to his sister while she was in the capital and Shamima told him that they had rented a house.

Shamim assumed that Noman wanted to spend his vacation travelling with his wife and thought nothing more of it.

"Shamima was in touch with me, but she did not say anything about her husband or make any complaint," he said.

Noman's uncle Kamal Hossain said his family did not know that he was in the country. However, they came to know that Noman, who worked in Saudi Arabia as a labourer, was in regular contact with his in-laws.

“Noman's parents are unwell. Even when he was out of the country, Noman barely kept in touch with them. I don't even know if he sent any money to his parents."

Having met through a mutual acquaintance, Noman and Shamima tied the knot a few years ago. They both completed their higher secondary education at the same college in Bhola, after which, Noman moved to Saudi Arabia.

Two and a half months after the wedding, he once again went abroad.

Kamal also cast doubts on Shamim's claims that Noman went to Bhola after returning to the country. "When you come back to the village, someone or the other is bound to see you. But no one mentioned anything about him."

While talking among themselves, one of Shamima's relatives said Noman owed money to some people, adding that the creditors visited his in-laws' house a few days ago to ask about him.

On whether Noman was in debt, Kamal said, "If someone was owed money by Noman, the first thing they'd do is go to his house. But I haven't heard about anyone going to his house in this regard."

Mrittunjoy Dey Sajal, additional deputy commissioner of DMP's Tejgaon Division, said police are exploring all angles - from Noman's decision not to inform his family about his return to the claims that he went to his in-laws' house to avoid facing his creditors -- in order to get to the bottom of the incident.

On the night of Sept 25, Noman was found hanging from the ceiling while his wife lay on the ground in the flat in Mohammadpur. The flat was completely empty, devoid of any furniture or household items.

The only thing there was a mattress, on which Shamima was found lying with blood dripping down her mouth and nose.

The building's security guards told reporters that the couple rented the flat in mid-September, but they had not provided copies of their national identity cards to the landlord at the time.

"They were supposed to provide their NIDs on Sunday morning, but when night fell and they still hadn't handed in the documents, we went up to check on them, only to find them dead."

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher