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Dhaka Tribune

Jhumon Das secures bail from High Court in digital security case

Court grants bail for one year but says Jhumon cannot leave Sunamganj without the trial court’s permission

Update : 23 Sep 2021, 12:22 PM

The High Court has granted bail to Sunamganj resident Jhumon Das Apon, who was arrested in a Digital Security Act (DSA) case on charges of defaming a Hefazat-e-Islam leader on social media.

On Thursday, the bench of Justice Mostafa Zaman Islam and Justice KM Zahid Sarwar granted one-year bail to Jhumon, but said he cannot leave Sunamganj without the trial court's permission.

Das’ counsel ZI Khan Panna said there was no legal bar for his client to be released from the Sunamganj prison.

Also Read - Jhuman Das moves High Court for bail in DSA case

Lawyers Tabarak Hossain, Subrata Chowdhury, Nahid Sultana Juthi and Ashraf Ali also appeared for the petitioner, while Deputy Attorney General Yahiya Dulal and Assistant Attorney General Md Mizanur Rahman represented the state.

“Though we wanted an unconditional bail, we are happy that the court granted him conditional bail,” said Jhuman’s wife Sweety Rani Das. 

On March 15, Hefazat-e-Islam held a rally in Sunamganj's Dirai upazila, where its former chief Junaid Babunagari and the then joint secretary general Manunul Haque preached.

A picture of Jhuman Das Apon taken after he was arrested in Sunamganj back in March Collected

The same day, 25-year-old Jhumon said in a Facebook post that Mamun’s speech would disrupt the communal harmony.

Hefazat supporters marched the area the next day, accusing Jhumon of hurting religious sentiments, when police detained the Hindu man to calm the Islamists. 

On March 17, the supporters of the radical group attacked and looted homes of Hindus at Noagaon Village in Shalla Upazila. The attackers vandalized at least 90 homes before a huge number of law enforcers from Shalla and Dirai police stations took the situation under control.

Also Read - Cultural activists demand immediate release of Jhuman Das

The same day police formally arrested Jhumon under Section 54 of the Code of Criminal Procedure before producing him in court, which sent him to jail.

Section 54 allows police to make an arrest without a warrant based on suspicious activities.

On March 22, police started a case under the Digital Security Act case and formally arrested him the next day.

His petition for bail was rejected by the Sunamganj Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s court and his lawyers took the case to the judge’s court. After the judge’s court turned down the bail plea, his counsels then moved the High Court.

Since the incident in March, several political, social, and human rights organizations have called for Jhumon's release.

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