The Jashore Awami League and police blamed each other over the alleged torture and arrest of Awami League town unit general secretary Mahmud Hasan Bipu and the assault on police constable Imran Hossain.
Awami League leaders said that Mahmud Hasan was reportedly picked up and tortured by the police on charge of beating up Imran, while police officers said that Mahmud and his associates abducted Imran and tortured him.
Constable Imran was reportedly beaten up by some Awami League leaders and activists following an altercation on Monday evening.
Police said, the leaders picked Imran up and took to a local club, where he was allegedly assaulted and tortured by the leaders. Later police, on information, raided the club and rescued the constable.
A case was filed with Jashore Kotwali Police Station at about 8:00pm on Monday by Imran against four Awami League leaders and 20-25 unidentified people for allegedly kidnaping and torturing him, Moniruzzaman, officer in-charge of Kotwali Police Station, told New Age.
Police arrested Mahmud and three other Awami League activists on early Tuesday pertaining to a case filed against them on charge of beating up Imran at the Shahid Minar area in the town on Monday night.
Mahmud, however, was released about 19 hours after his arrest and the other activists were sent to judicial custody.
Locals and Awami League leaders said that police released Mahmud after Awami League leaders and activists took to the streets demanding his release.
He was rushed to Jashore General Hospital immediately after his release at about 3:30pm.
Mahmud Hasan was taken to Dhaka by a helicopter for better treatment at about 3:00pm on Wednesday.
The incident sparked a blame game.
Shahin Chaklader, Jashore district AL general secretary and local member of parliament, compared the police action to the acts of Pakistani Army on the night of March 25, 1971.
He said, ‘The police attacked five houses of Awami League leaders. No civilized man can act like this. I conveyed the information to top-level leaders of the Awami League including the party’s general secretary.’
‘Police also attacked my press,’ the MP added, ‘Bipu is a leader of excellent character and he just fell victim to police.’
He also said that those who did the acts were recruited during the rule of the BNP-led government.
Kotwali Police Station officer-in-charge Moniruzzaman, however, denied the allegations.
Mahmud Hasan Bipu told journalists that police tortured him during his 19-hour detention.
He also denied his involvement in torturing Imran Hossain.
He claimed that he rather saved him.
Constable Imran for whom the police and the Awami League stand face-to-face told that he was tortured several times by the Awami League leaders after being picked up to the club.
Bipu was among the people who tortured him, said the constable.
District police superintendent Muhammad Ashraf Hossain said that the allegations brought by the Awami League leaders were baseless.
‘No house of Awami League leaders were raided,’ he added.
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