The additional chief metropolitan magistrate court of Dhaka on Thursday issued a warrant for the arrest of daily Prothom Alo editor and publisher Matiur Rahman, its deputy editor and monthly magazine Kishor Alo editor Anisul Hoque and eight others.
The arrest warrant was issued over a case filed following the death of Dhaka Residential Model College student Naimul Abrar Rahat in an accident at an event organised by the Kishor Alo on November 1, 2019.
Magistrate Md Kaysarul Islam passed the order in response to a petition from the complainant hours after the Mohammadpur police station submitted their investigation report on the death to the court on a previous order.
The eight others to be arrested were Kishor Alo assistant editor Mohitul Alam, Prothom Alo’s head of event Kabir Bakul, executives Shuvashish Pramanik and Shahparan Tusher, and generator and decoration workers Jashim Uddin, Mosharraf Hossain, Sujon and Kamrul Howlader.
The case was recorded under Section 304(A) of the Penal Code that stipulates a five-year imprisonment with fine as the maximum punishment.
Five days after the death of DRMC ninth grader Naimul Abrar, his father Mujibur Rahman on November 6, 2019 filed the case with the court accusing Prothom Alo editor and publisher Matiur Rahman and unnamed others for causing the death by negligence.
Mujibur’s lawyer Mohammad Omar Faruk Asif in his case application named only Prothom Alo editor and publisher Matiur Rahman and mentioned all others related to the anniversary function of the Kishor Alo held at the playground of the college in the capital.
The complainant stated that Naimul was electrocuted in the event.
Then additional chief metropolitan magistrate Aminul Haque, after recording the complainant’s testimony, passed an order to exhume the student’s body.
The Prothom Alo had expressed condolences at the death but said that its editor Matiur was not present at the function due to his illness.
The daily further said that it had cancelled the entire anniversary programme over the death.
Witnesses told New Age that Naimul was electrocuted as he came in touch with a live wire connecting a generator to the stage when the programme was approaching its end.
He was taken to Universal Medical College Hospital in Mohakhali in the city where he died at about 5:00pm.
In his case petition, the complainant stated that Naimul Abrar was electrocuted and fell on the ground at about 3:30pm during the function as enough precautionary measures were not taken.
The injured student was taken to Universal Medical College Hospital at Mohakhali instead of the nearby Shaheed Suhrawardy Medical College Hospital, the complaint says.
It further reads that Naimul was admitted to the hospital at about 4:15pm, where he was declared dead at about 4:51pm.
On November 3, a legal notice was served on Matiur Rahman demanding compensation over the death.
Students, pro-government political parties and Islamist parties held dozens of human chains and staged demonstrations on the college campus and in front of the daily’s office in the capital’s Karwanbazar so far demanding justice for Naimul.
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