A home ministry committee for probing the death of Jatiyatabadi Samajik Sangskritik Sangstha leader Amirul Islam Mintu in custody at its first meeting on Thursday discussed a complaint on the issue referred by the National Human Rights Commission.
‘We have discussed the complaint of a rights organisation referred to the home ministry by the National Human Rights Commission,’ a committee member told New Age after the meeting.
Chaired by deputy secre- tary (political) and head of the committee Alamgir M Manjurul Alam, the meeting was attended by its members, Dhaka Metropolitan Police (Ramna Zone) deputy commissioner Krishna Pada Roy and Bangladesh Institute of Human Rights executive director Shahanur Islam, he said.
The national commission, he said, also asked the home ministry to hold an inquiry into Mintu’s death in custody by an impartial inquiry committee and report the findings to it.
The rights organisation filed the complaint with the commission on February 23 demanding impartial inquiry into Mintu’s death in custody.
Mintu was beaten up at the Shahbagh police station after he was arrested from Bijoynagar in the city on January 27.
On the following day, he was produced before the court of Dhaka chief metropolitan magistrate.Mintu was shifted to a hospital after he had fainted in the court’s lockup, said the complainants quoting newspaper reports.
The commission had directed the home ministry to submit a report to it after inquiring the allegation by at least a three-member impartial body, comprising a government official not below the rank of deputy secretary, a police officer not below the rank of superintendent of police and a civil society personality of the choice of the victim’s family.
The commission had been asking for holding independent inquiries into each incident of extrajudicial killing in the wake of conflicting statements from the families of the victims over deaths in custody and the law enforcement agencies.
Accordingly, on July 15, the home ministry appointed a committee with deputy secretary (political) Shafiqur Rahman as chairman, deputy commissioner of the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (Ramna Zone) Krishno Pada Roy and Bangladesh Institute of Human Rights’ executive director Shahanur Islam as members.
Later, the committee was reconstituted on August 18 replacing Shafiqur.
Asked about the deadline for the committee to submit its report to the commission, the member said that it was empowered to seek more time.
The objective of the inquiry, he said, would be to verify the newspapers reports that alleged that Mintu was tortured to death, to identify the causes behind it and to give its recommendation to stop repetition of deaths in custody.
The New Age, 24.09.2010