Chandpur violence: Magistrate denies allegation

A magistrate of Chandpur who has been sued for ordering police to open fire during Sunday’s violence that left two persons dead denied the allegation.

“Police opened fire as per their own decision. I reached the spot after the firing,” Magistrate Shamimul Haque Pavel told The Daily Star Wednesday night.

In his immediate reaction about the case filed against him by one of the victims’ wife, the magistrate said: “I will protest it in the court,” he said.

On January 29, two rickshawpullers – Abdul Hossain Mridha and Limon Soiyal – were killed in police firing during a clash with BNP activists in Chandpur.

The same day, the law enforcers claimed that police opened fire in self-defence complying with order from magistrate Pavel.

Two days after the death, Fatema Begum, the widow of Mridha, filed the case against the magistrate and 195 policemen.

In another development, a two-member probe committee formed by police to investigate the incident started its work in the district headquarters Thursday.

Biswas Afzal Hossain, deputy inspector general of police of Chittagong Range who has been leading the committee, visited Chandpur Hasan Ali Government High School ground, the scene of the clash, Thursday morning.

As part of the investigation, the team held talks with the people who witnessed the incident, local journalists, teachers, students and their guardians of the school.

During the visit, the DIG said, “We will take legal action against the police or the people who will be found responsible for the incident.”

Meantime, a BNP delegation told locals on Wednesday that BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia will visit Chandpur on February 13 to express her sympathy and condolence to the bereaved family members of the dead victims.

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