One the accused, Ifti Mosharraf Sakal, confesses in court
Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s (DMP) Additional Commissioner Monirul Islam has said that their preliminary investigation points to Bangladesh Chhatra League’s Buet unit leader Amit Saha’s involvement to some extent in Abrar Fahad's murder.
Addressing a press briefing on Thursday afternoon, he said they have found — through their investigation, surrounding conditions and evidences — that Amit may not have been present on the spot when Abrar was being beaten, but he was involved.
According to the law, anyone can commit a crime even by not being present at the scene, Monirul said. “In many instances, it has been shown that anyone can play an important role even by being present at the scene of the crime. Something similar has happened in this case.”
“We have already arrested 16 people, 12 of whom were named in the FIR. We have also taken them in custody for questioning,” he said.
Evidences have been gathered against the accused through interrogation of the arrestees, Monirul said. "Some of them [the arrestees] may even confess."
Hours after the DMP official’s briefing, Ifti Mosharraf Sakal, one of the 19 people accused in the case, was sent to jail on Thursday after he confessed in court to his involvement in Abrar’s murder.
Sakal gave his confessional statement at the office of Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Shadbir Yasir Ahsan Chowdhury, who afterwards ordered him to jail, said CMM Court General Recording Officer Sub-Inspector Mazharul Islam.
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Earlier, Inspector Md Wahiduzzaman of Detective Branch (DB) of police, also the case investigation officer, produced Sakal before the magistrate to record his statement.
Police on Thursday also detained two others in connection with Abrar’s murder.
DB detained Mizanur Rahman Mizan, Abrar's roommate and a third-year student of water resources engineering department, from Buet’s Sher-e-Bangla Hall around 12:30pm.
Hossain Mohammad Toha, a 17 batch student of mechanical engineering department, was detained from Gazipur’s Mawna area around 3pm. Toha is one of the accused named in the case, said DMP Deputy Commissioner Masudur Rahman.
‘If police knew, Abrar would be alive’
Abrar, a second year EEE student, was murdered inside Sher-e-Bangla Hall in the early hours of Monday.
The leaders of Bangladesh Chhatra League’s Buet unit have been accused of beating him to death for his alleged involvement with Islami Chhatra Shibir, an unsubstantiated claim that is yet to be proved.
Abrar's father filed the murder case against 19 people at Chawkbazar police station on Monday evening. Until on Thursday, 16 people were arrested.
Asked why the police patrol team did not go inside the hall when Abrar was being beaten, DMP official Monirul said: "A team did go there. However, they were told that nothing was going on inside.
“It was difficult for the policemen to understand what was going on without entering the hall. Police need to take permission from the authorities to enter the halls.”
Monirul lamented: “We are truly sorry. If we had known something like this was going on, we could have prevented this unfortunate incident.”
Motive not clear yet
Monirul Islam, also the chief of DMP’s Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) Unit, said that they were not clear yet about the motive behind the murder. “Abrar’s killing is a combination of many incidents.
“It cannot be said right now that he has been killed for one reason. It will take us a few more days to find out about the motive.”
Asked how many were actually involved in beating Abrar to death, he said: "We are trying to get a clear picture. We are investigating who was there or not."
“Even though there is no specific picture or video of the beating, there may be some who were involved, but were not in seen in the CCTV camera footage. Some may have only gone to that room after hearing the sounds. We are investigating everything. It will take some time to get a clear picture,” he added.
“If needed, we will be questioning those, including administration officials, who were seen standing near Abrar’s dead body,” said Monirul.