• Friday, Aug 23, 2019
  • Last Update : 06:08 pm

HC seeks report over deaths of Bangladeshis in the Mediterranean in two months

  • Published at 01:20 am July 2nd, 2019
High Court-HC-court
File photo of the High Court Dhaka Tribune

Expatriate Welfare ministry has formed a high powered inter-ministerial committee to probe the incident 

The High Court on Monday ordered the government to submit its probe report within 60 days about those travel agencies and human traffickers responsible for the deaths of 37 Bangladeshis in the Mediterranean Sea in May, 2019.

The HC bench of Justice FRM Nazmul Ahsan and Justice KM Kamrul Kader passed the order following a writ petition filed by Supreme Court lawyer Advocate Emdadul Huq.

Deputy Attorney General (DAG) ABM Abdullah-Al-Mahmud Bashar stood for the state, while Advocate Emdadul Haque Suman represented the writ. 

During court hearing on the writ, DAG ABM Abdullah-Al-Mahmud Bashar informed the court that the Ministry of Expatriate Welfare and Overseas Employment has formed a high powered inter-ministerial committee, lead by an additional secretary, to probe the incident. 

The Expatriate Welfare ministry has sent a letter to the Ministry of Home Affairs for identifying and taking appropriate actions against the travel agencies and human traffickers responsible for sending Bangladeshi nationals abroad illegally and for the tragic death of 37 amongst. 

DAG Bashar also placed a report before the court from the superintendent of police (SP) of Noakhali  - saying that the police were trying to identify the three alleged human trafficking syndicates allegedly responsible the incident.

Earlier on June 24, the bench of Justice FRM Nazmul Ahasan and Justice KM Kamrul Kader passed the order and asked the respondents to report within a week.

Advocate Mohammed Emdadul Haque filed the petition earlier on June 17 with annexed newspaper reports about the death of Bangladeshis in the Mediterranean Sea.

The writ seeks HC directives to take appropriate action in this regard according to the Prevention and Suppression of Human Trafficking Act, 2012.

It also seeks directives against the travel agents which unlawfully sent the Bangladeshi nationals to Italy in harm's way.

The writ also seeks HC order about a just recompense to the tune of Tk1 crore for each of the victim’s family.

Secretaries of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Foreign affairs, Ministry of Expatriates' Welfare and Overseas Employment, Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, inspector general of police (IGP) and superintendents of police (SP) of Noakhali and Sylhet were made respondents of the writ.

The Bangladeshi nationals reportedly died after their boat capsized in the Mediterranean Sea on the way to Italy from Libya on May 9.