Two more witnesses also testify in the murder case against Siraj and 15 others
A Feni court has accepted the charge sheet and fixed July 17 for the indictment hearing of Md Sirajuddaula in the case filed over the sexual harassment of late Sonagazi madrasa student Nusrat Jahan Rafi.
Judge Mamunur Rashid of the district’s Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal on Tuesday took the decision during a scheduled hearing, said M Shahjahan Saju, the lawyer who represented Nusrat’s family.
Sirajuddaula, the suspended principal of Sonagazi Islamia Fazil (Degree) Madrasa and the only charge sheeted accused in the case, was present in court at the time.
Saju said the tribunal would formally frame charges against Sirajuddaula after the hearing on July 17.
Police had submitted to court the charge sheet in this case on July 3.
According to Nusrat’s statement recorded in court, Sirajuddaula sexually harassed her after summoning her to his office at the madrasa in the morning of March 26.
Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) Inspector Md Shah Alom, who is also the case investigation officer, said a total of 29 people, including two magistrates, have been made witnesses in this case.
He said they would also record statements of several witnesses, including two of Nusrat’s friends, and use Nusrat’s statement and confessional statements of Sirajuddaula and two others — who are accused in the Nusrat murder case — during the court proceedings.
The case under the Women and Children Repression Prevent Act was filed by Nsurat’s mother Shirin Aktar on March 27. Sirajuddaula was arrested and sent to jail the same day.
Meanwhile, two more prosecution witnesses testified at the same tribunal yesterday in the case filed over Nusrat’s murder, said Shahjahan Saju. “So far, 11 witnesses have testified in the case,” he added.
Saju said, after recording their statements, the court adjourned the hearing in the case until 11:30am Wednesday.
All 16 accused, including prime accused Sirajuddaula, were present in court at the time.
PBI on May 29 had submitted the charge sheet in this case against the 16. The tribunal indicted them on June 20.
On April 6, Nusrat, an 18-year-old Alim examinee, was set on fire on the roof of the madrasa by people loyal to Sirajuddaula in broad daylight, after she refused to withdraw the sexual harassment case.
She succumbed to her critical burn injuries at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital on April 10 — which sparked a nationwide outrage and led the authorities to take swift action.