April 4, 2013
Shibir Office secretary of Rajshahi City, Anwarul Islam Masum was not brought before Court by RAB even after five days since his arrest. His family members are deeply concerned and anxious of his whereabouts as they contacted RAB-5 and Police from Rajshahi City numerous times and were unable to find out where he was being held. His family is also considering that he may have been secretly kidnapped and killed. Members of his family held a press conference to express their demands to the Law Enforcement Agency to immediately bring Masum before court.
Local people and his family members inform us that on 4th of April at 2:30am, RAB and the Police Force raided Masum’s uncle’s house in the Notun Bilshimla Bondho Gate area, house number 175. The raid was carried out by RAB members Bulbul, Nahid and 30-40 others. They broke the lock of the main gate and forced their way in. After searching ruthlessly they arrested the City Office Secretary Anwarul Islam Masum while he was asleep. The Law Enforcement Force locked his family members in one room of the house and took Masum to another and severely tortured him. After one hour of inflicting torture on him, RAB took a picture of him with strategically planted laptop, desktop computer, 5-6 mobile phones, and 2 guns in order to frame him. They took Masum back with them and around 4am in the night, they raided many Shibir hostels and arrested many Shibir activists in the area of Shahajipara.
They took Masum to a Shibir hostel in the same area and asked these students, Momin, Tuhin, Khairul, Dalim, Jahid, Monem and others there if they knew Masum. They all denied knowing him as they feared being arrested. The students who witnessed this said that after this Masum was taken away from there.
After 24 hours had passed since his arrest and he was not taken to court by RAB, family members started to inquire into Masum’s whereabouts at two RAB camps; RAB-5 Headquarters and Railway Colony Camp. RAB in both camps denied his arrest. They received the same response when they later contacted the Police, DB offices within Rajshahi City. After this his family members held a press conference last Saturday to express their concern about Masum’s whereabouts and that he should be brought in front of court immediately.
According to another source, after he was arrested, Masum was kept at RAB Railway Colony Camp with the rest of the detained. At this time Masum was handcuffed to the grills of the window. The arrested individuals prayed Asr, Maghrib and Esha together and then ate dinner. That night after 12.30am RAB took him away from there. A recently released prisoner from that camp informs that there was no news of Masum since that night.
Masum’s mother Nurjahan Begum, sister Mahmuda Parvin and sister-in-law Shopna informed that last Saturday when they went to RABs Railway Colony Camp looking for him, they were told that no one by that name was arrested or detained there. After when they went to RAB-5 Headquarters they were told the same thing. When discussing this matter with RAB-5 Commander Lieutenant Cornel Anwar Latif Khan yesterday noon time, he completely denied arresting anyone in the name of Anwarul Islam Masum. In response to the recently released prisoners account about Masum being held at RAB-5 camp before going missing, Cornel Anwar says: Someone made up a story and you believed him?
Translated from Amar Desh