Forced disappearances rampant: new names regularly added to list of missing

ilias ali

So far more than 150 persons have been added to the list

The list of forced disappearances, missing and murder is getting longer and longer. One after the other people are going missing every day. No trace is found of them even after waiting for a year. Meanwhile even severe condemnation from national and international human rights organisations has not managed to stop or reduce the number of forced disappearances and murder taking place. Altogether at least 150 names have been added to the list; while many are missing whose names are not on the list. During the last 4 months 12 persons have been victim of forced disappearances, including both normal citizen as well as political activists.

On April 4th Chattro Dal leader Mofizul Islam Rashed (32) was kidnapped from Mirpur Mazar Road, Dhaka, in front of Diamond Garments. A group of people wearing DB’s jacket carried him away in a microbus. Since then he is missing. His uncle Titu told Naya Diganta that they went to the police, RAB and DB to seek his whereabouts, but there has been no trace of him. Rashid’s family is very anxious and in serious uncertainly as to whether he is alive or dead.

On 4th April Rajshai city Shibir leader Anwarul Islam Masum was abducted. He was kidnapped from his uncle’s residence by people claiming to be members of law enforcement agencies. Since then he is missing. His relatives couldn’t find his whereabouts in spite of going to several departments to seek him out.

On April 11, 2013 at 12:15am, men dressed as members of the law enforcement agency picked up the Secretary of Jamat-e-Islami of Joypurhat district and the teacher of Joypurhat’s Talimul School and College, Mr. Nazrul Islam. He was abducted from his own residence at Shahebpara on Thana Road. His wife Salma Sultana informed that a group of 20-25 men broke into the house. At first they broke the lock of a collapsible gate downstairs and went up to the third floor. They said they were from law enforcement agencies and ordered them to open the door. The men were about to break down the door when Nazrul Islam opened it. He was then forcibly taken away in a brown colored microbus. Since then he is missing. According to documentation by Human Rights organisation, Odhikar, in April 2013 eight persons disappeared.

One after another political opposition and general people are vanishing without any trace. Last year on April 17th Secretary of BNP and former MP M. Ilias Ali and his driver Ansar Ali disappeared from Banani area, Dhaka. Ilias Ali’s wife and children met the Prime Minister seeking her intervention to find him but with no result. A couple of months before Illias Ali disappeared Sylhet zilla Chatro Dal leaders Dinar and Junaid faced the same. They were also kidnapped by law enforcement members in plain clothes. On 25th June 2010 Chowdhry Alam was kidnapped. His wife informed that they contacted several places but nothing was found.

Students of Islami University Kushtia, Al-Mukkadas and Walliullah, went missing since February 4th. They were kidnapped by law enforcement members on a bus returning to Kushtia from Dhaka.

Jalokathi Jubo Dal leaders, Mizanur RahmanJammadar, and his two associates Murad and Furqan were also kidnapped from Dhaka. After a few months Furqan came out and told the incident to the media but he was again kidnapped. Mizan’s brother-in-law Sikder and nephew Summon was kidnapped in the same way. They are missing since then. Mizan’s wife Nasima stated that they have assumed that they are no longer alive hence they are not trying anymore to know their whereabouts.

Former leader of Chatro Union A.K.M. Shamim has been missing since 29th September 2010. He was kidnapped in front of his residence by law enforcement members.

Ubaidur Rahman was kidnapped from Gopalgonj by some people in black clothing. A General Diary was lodged at the Gopalgong police department. Police told the reporter they are trying to rescue him but couldn’t find him yet. Same day another person named Mahbub went missing from the same district. A general diary was filed for him too but as yet no result. Police have stated he is yet to be found.

Same way the following persons are still missing: Awami League leader Nur Mohammad Hazi, his son-in-law Nazrul Islam Basa, businessman Humayun, Maulana Shamim, Waliullah, Chatro league leader Delwar, labourer Habibur rahman, businessmen Abdul Karim Howlader,Kalam Sheikh, Abul Basher Sheikh, Abdul Karim, Atayr Rahman, Rezaul Karim Rizvi, Tarib uddin, Rafiqul Haq, Ainul Molla, Sultan Howlader, Saiful Islam, Sarwar jahan, Momin Hossain, Aminul Islam, Arif, Jasim, Jewel, Sheikh Sadi, Didar, Akash, Meraj, Masim, Shamim Hossain Sohel, Ismail Hossain, Masum Hossain. These are only few names out of many from different walks of life. Some are students some businessmen. Only thing common among them is that they all are victims of forced disappearances by law enforcement agencies.

Regarding the matter Police IG Hasan Mahmud Khandakar told Naya Diganta that a file is lodged after a person is abducted or missing. Sometimes the police can find them but sometimes the worst happens. But police always carry out their responsibility.

Sultana Kamal, executive director of the Human Rights Forum (ASK) and former adviser of caretaker government stated in a press conference that under the current government four year regime 462 people have been killed, 156 have been subject to forced disappearances and only 28 bodies were recovered.

Human Right activists advocate Sigma Huda said regarding enforced disappearances that it is very intimidating. A missing person can be found one day. In case of abduction the reason can be investigated. But in enforced disappearances dead body is not always found. Most of the time abduction is done by law enforcing agencies. In many cases it has been observed that to avenge family or personal conflict law enforcing agencies are used to kidnap. Legally one can’t be picked and held for a long time.

Secretary of human right organization Odhikar, Adilur Rahman Khan, said during the Liberation War of Bangladesh many people were victim of forced disappearances. Many intellectuals disappeared. The trend continued during the era of post-independence government. Many leftists’ activists disappeared. Kalpana Chakma disappeared. But now the situation has taken a horrible shape. It should be stopped. Government should form an independent commission to carry proper investigation.

Article translated from: Naya Diganta
Image source: AP