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Cops playing hide and seek with two ‘suspects’

  • Published at 11:16 pm July 13th, 2016
  • Last updated at 07:58 pm July 14th, 2016
Cops playing hide and seek with two ‘suspects’
Police are yet to clearly identify the two men or say whether they are suspected to be involved with the terror attack. The two – Lazarus Saren, 50, and Jakirul Islam, 22 – had been undergoing treatment at ward 102 of DMCH as of yesterday evening before the Detective Branch of Police officials took them to DB office for interrogation around 6pm. They were under police surveillance and no one was allowed to visit or talk with them at the hospital. Lazarus was injured in his left leg while the condition of Jakirul, who had an injury on his chest, was critical, sources said. Inter Services Public Relations Directorate (ISPR) said at a press briefing on July 2 that one suspected terrorist was held during the drive, but they did not disclose their identity. However, Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) Unit sources confirmed that the suspected terrorist mentioned in the ISPR statement was Jakirul Islam. On July 4, Inspector General Shahidul Haque said two suspects in the Gulshan attack were in the hospital and would be interrogated after treatment. But neither Lazarus nor Jakirul are mentioned either as hostages or suspects in the case filed on July 4 with Gulshan police station on the attack. Jakirul Islam, from Bogra, took his job at the O' Kitchen Restaurant, adjacent to Holey Artisan Bakery, a month before the deadly terror attack in Gulshan. Two of the five Gulshan terror attackers – Shafiqul Islam Ujjal and Khairul Islam Payel – were also from Bogra. The district is known as a stronghold for extremist and terrorist outfits such as Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh. The other man under police surveillance at DMCH, Lazarus Saren, is a Christian. Although DMCH has him registered under the name Nazarus Saren, the restaurant's officials confirmed that he was their employee Lazarus Saren. Police sources said Lazarus was held at the Natun Bazar check post while fleeing the scene of the terror attack just after army commandos stormed the restaurant on July 2. “He fled the scene dodging the eye of law enforcers, although he was supposed to come and seek help as he was injured. Rather he was caught at a police check post while fleeing in a CNG,” a competent source told the Dhaka Tribune. He has been kept under police surveillance due to this suspicious act, the source added. Asked why the two men had not been interrogated yet, the source said so far the suspects had not been in any physical condition to be questioned. Responding to a query, CTTC's acting deputy commissioner Saiful Islam said they were keeping all avenues of investigation open. Sanwar Hossain, additional deputy commissioner of CTTC, said investigators had already questioned a number of people while the involvement of some others were yet unclear. “Who is involved or what happened in the attack can only be disclosed after interrogation,” he added. Meanwhile, families say two hostages from the terror attack – Tahmid Hasib Khan and Hasnat R Karim – were yet to return home, even though law enforcers have claimed that they had been released on the night of July 8.
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