Bangshal OC, five policemen sued over bodybuilder Farooq’s death in police custody

The family of the bodybuilder, who gained fame after winning Mr Bangladesh title, alleges that he died due to torture in custody

Published : 31 Jan 2024, 02:56 PM
Updated : 31 Jan 2024, 02:56 PM

A case has brought charges against six police officers, including Bangshal Police Station chief Mainul Islam, that Farooq Hossain, who gained fame after winning Me Bangladesh title, died due to torture in custody.

Farooq’s wife, Ima Akter Happy, started the lawsuit at the court of Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge Md Asaduzzaman on Tuesday.

The judge, on Wednesday, instructed the police's Detective Branch to submit a probe report on the allegation on Mar 28, according to the court’s additional public counsel Tapas Kumar Pal.

The five other suspects in the case are - Bangshal Police Station Sub-Inspector Imdadul Haque, Abu Saleh, Masud Rana and Bulbul Ahmed.

Farooq left his residence at Khaje Dewan Singh lane in Old Dhaka’s Lalbagh citing personal reasons around 9:30pm on Jan 12. He made a phone call to his wife an hour later and informed her that he was in custody and suffering torture at the Kayettuli police outpost, according to the case dossiers.

Happy, along with her two children, rushed to the outpost and discovered Farooq in detention. Happy alleged that police beat him and demanded Tk 100,000 when she sought her husband’s release.

The woman said police reduced the amount to Tk 50,000 when she revealed the bodybuilder’s identity but accused Farooq of being a drug dealer. Police took him to Bangshal Police Station on a motorcycle afterwards.

Happy pleaded for her husband’s release to OC Mainul as well but the Bangshal Police Station chief asked her to contact CMM court the next day.

Farooq asked Happy to seek justice in court if anything happened to him when she went to inquire about her husband at the police station the next day. She found out that a case of 150 grams of drugs had been filed against her husband. She returned home afterwards.

On Jan 30, a person from Dhaka Medical College Hospital informed Farooq’s death to his wife around 8:30pm.

Happy stated in the case that she found her husband’s body at the hospital’s morgue, with injury marks on his neck, chest, and back.

Mainul did not pick up the phone when called for his comment on the lawsuit. Other police officers also made no comments.

“Farooq was apprehended in a drug case. He was sent to prison by a court afterwards,” Deputy Commissioner Md Zafar Hossain of Lalbagh Division police said when asked about the victim’s arrest.

“After two days in jail, he felt ill and was taken to hospital where a doctor declared him dead.”

“No evidence of police torture was found in the initial investigation. Besides, he was a drug addict,” Zafar claimed.