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Attack on Sheikh Hasina's train: 8 more fugitive convicts surrender

  • Published at 12:36 am July 15th, 2019
File photo: Accused BNP leaders in a case filed an armed attack on a train carrying Awami League President Sheikh Hasina 25 years ago gets in the police van Dhaka Tribune

Earlier on July 3, a Pabna court sentenced nine BNP leaders and its affiliates to death in the case

Eight more convicts have surrendered before a court in Pabna in a case filed over the attack on the train carrying then opposition leader Sheikh Hasina in 1994.

Pabna Additional District and Sessions Judge Md Rustom Ali, also acting judge of Pabna Special Tribunal-3, sent them to jail denying their bail petition on Sunday.

Of the convicts who surrendered, five were sentenced to life imprisonment, while the other three were jailed for 10 years.

With this, a total of 40 convicts landed in jail in the case. However, seven other convicts are still absconding, with five dying during trial.

Earlier on July 3, the same Pabna court sentenced nine BNP leaders and its affiliates to death in the case.

The death row convicts were also charged a fine of Tk5 lakh each.

Also Read- 1994 attack on Sheikh Hasina: 9 BNP men sentenced to death

The court sentenced 25 other BNP leaders and activists to life in prison, and fined each of them Tk3 lakh, with an additional two years in jail in the event they are unable to pay the fine.

Thirteen more convicts were sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined Tk1 lakh each, with an additional one-year imprisonment in the event they are unable to pay the fine.

Out of 52 people accused in the charge sheet, 33 were present during the verdict at the court on Wednesday. 

All the convicts were activists and leaders of BNP, its youth wing Jatiyatabadi Juba Dal, and student front Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal, based in Pabna’s Ishwardi upazila when the attack took place.    

What happened?

According to the case details, on September 23, 1994, a group of members of BNP and its affiliate organizations attacked a train carrying the entourage of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina when it was entering Ishwardi railway junction.

Hasina, who was the leader of the opposition then, was travelling from Khulna to Syedpur through Ishwardi for party programs.

The assailants hurled crude bombs at the train and opened fire at it.

Nazrul Islam, the then OC of Ishwardi railway police, filed a case against seven people after the attack.

After the Awami League came to power in 1996, a fresh investigation on the attack was conducted, and 52 people were accused in the new report. 

Police submitted the charge sheet against the accused in April 1997. However, the court did not accept the charge sheet and transferred the case to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for further investigation. The CID submitted another charge sheet before the court.