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Holey Artisan attack trial formally begins

  • Published at 03:15 pm December 3rd, 2018
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Officials of law enforcement agencies at the Holey Artisan Bakery, where a group of militants carried out a barbaric attack on the night of July 1, 2016, at Gulshan, Dhaka Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

Plaintiff Ripon Kumar Das, former Gulshan police station sub-inspector, was the first prosecution witness

The formal trial of Gulshan café attack case started on Monday with the deposition of the first prosecution witness Ripon Kumar Das.

Dhaka Anti-terrorism Special Tribunal Judge Md Mujibur Rahman recorded the testimony of plaintiff Ripon Kumar Das, former sub-inspector of Gulshan police station.

Defence Lawyer Faruque Ahmed cross-examined Ripon Kumar Das, and fixed Tuesday for the next hearing of the case.

The tribunal framed charges against eight suspected militants in the case on November 26, and fixed December 3 for recording the statements of witnesses.

Six out of the eight accused – Jahangir Alam alias Rajib Gandhi, Rakibul Hasan Rigan, Rashedul Islam, Sohel Mahfuz, Mizanur Rahman and Hadisur Rahman Sagor – were produced before the court during the hearing.

Two other accused – Shahidul Islam Khaled and Mamunur Rashid Ripon – are on the run.

The Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit of police submitted the charge sheet on July 23, bringing the charges against the eight accused.

Names of 13 other militants were not included in the charge sheet as they were killed in encounters with law enforcers at different places on different dates.

Names of total 211 people have been mentioned in the charge sheet. The witnesses will be examined to prove the charges in the case filed with Gulshan police station under the Anti-Terrorism Act.

On July 1, 2016, gunmen stormed the Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka’s Gulshan area and opened fire. A total of 22 people, including 17 foreign nationals and two policemen were killed in the attack.

Twenty hostages – nine Italians, seven Japanese, one Indian, one Bangladeshi-born American and two Bangladeshis – were killed in the sensational attack at the restaurant.

Besides, two senior police officers – Salauddin Ahmed and Robiul Karim, assistant commissioners of Detective Branch – were killed while trying to rescue the hostages.