Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Farhad Mazhar’s wife objects to police report saying he wasn’t abducted

  • Court Correspondent,
    Published: 2017-12-07 14:44:39 BdST


Columnist Farhad Mazhar’s wife Farida Akhtar will move the court against the police’s investigation report, which concluded that he was not abducted.

Akhtar appeared before a Dhaka metropolitan magistrate court on Thursday, when the court was scheduled to hold a hearing over the police’s report, submitted last month.

Investigators said they have found no truth in the claim that the columnist was abducted and petitioned to prosecute the couple for filing a false report.

Akhtar’s lawyer said his client objected to the report and pleaded for time to file a petition.  

“My client says there is no basis for investigating officer’s petition to prosecute her,” said counsel Syed Jainul Abedin. “The case was accurate. The petition will show the truth of the case and the falseness of the investigation report. We will go to a higher court if necessary.”

The court accepted her plea and set Jan 9 to file the petition objecting the police’s report,

A right-wing activist and staunch government critic, Mazhar was found on a bus in Jessore while travelling from Khulna to Dhaka, 18 hours after he went missing from the capital on Jun 3.

His family alleged in a police complaint, which was later recorded as a case, that he was abducted after he left home early that morning.

The final probe report submitted by the investigation officer says the case filed by Farida Akhter is baseless and covers up the actual situation.

The dramatic disappearance and discovery of the 70-year-old columnist sparked debate in the political quarter and on social media.

Social media was abuzz with criticism against Mazhar after police produced a woman, identified as Archana Rani, in court on Jul 10.

Archana was allegedly traced as part of the law enforcers’ investigation into the man’s disappearance.

Archana identified herself as a follower of Farhad Mazhar and then told court that he left home on the day of his disappearance to send her money.

"The information provided by the woman has matched the police investigation into the Farhad Mazhar incident," Detective Branch Assistant Commissioner Hafiz Al Asad, who was in charge of the investigation, told

Earlier, Dhaka Metropolitan Police chief Md Asaduzzaman Mia said detectives were suspicious of the account provided by Farhad Mazhar.

Law enforcers have been expressing suspicion about the authenticity of his abduction claim since they discovered him on the bus.

Security footage of him loitering in the New Market area in Khulna on the afternoon of his disappearance further fuelled police's suspicion, said the DMP chief.

The account he provided to court is inconsistent with the evidence of the day gathered from CCTV footage, call records and other findings, he had said.