Court turns down BNP petition to file a case against top policemen for vandalism at party office

Naming 10 top police officials, BNP wrote in the petition that a large contingent of policemen on Dec 7 last year wreaked havoc by ransacking the offices from the main entrance to all the way up to the sixth floor

Published : 22 Jan 2023, 08:44 AM
Updated : 22 Jan 2023, 08:44 AM

A judge in Dhaka has thrown out a BNP petition to start legal proceedings against 10 senior police officers, including the chief of the Detective Branch Harunor Rashid, on charges of vandalising the party headquarters in the capital's Naya Paltan in December.

Metropolitan Magistrate Rajesh Chowdhury dismissed the petition after hearing the plaintiff's deposition on Sunday afternoon, according to Kalam Khan, one of the party's lawyers.

Nazim Uddin Alam, a member of the BNP's executive committee, lodged the complaint with the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's Court earlier in the day.

The others accused in the petition include Additional Commissioner Md Asaduzzaman, chief of Dhaka police's anti-terrorism unit, Joint Commissioner Sanjit Kumar of the DB and Joint Commissioner Biplab Kumar Das of the Ramna zone, along with around 200-300 unnamed policemen.

The BNP has named 14 witnesses in the petition.

According to the complaint, the accused, armed with deadly weapons, 'illegally' entered the party's central offices on Dec 7 last year and created a hostile situation. They subsequently wreaked havoc by ransacking the offices from the main entrance to all the way up to the sixth floor. They also arrested several party leaders, including the office staff, and beat up BNP activists indiscriminately.

The BNP urged the court to take measures in relation to the collection of evidence surrounding the allegations, including CCTV footage and sought arrest warrants against the accused.

BNP workers clashed with police in front of the party’s central office in Nayapaltan on Dec 7 amid tension surrounding the divisional rally of the party three days later. A BNP activist was killed during the clash while scores were injured.

Later in the day, a large contingent of police members entered the BNP office and arrested hundreds of activists.

On Dec 12, four days after the incident, BNP leaders and activists were allowed in.

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher