JMB member Asadul Islam Arif, who was given death penalty in Jhalakathi judges Jagannath Pare and Sohel Ahmed killing case, has been hanged in Khulna district jail.
The sentence was executed at 10:30pm on Sunday amid tight security, said Khulna Jail Super Kamrul Islam confirmed the Dhaka Tribune.
Khulna Deputy Commissioner Nazmul Ahsan, DIG Prisons (Jessore) Tipu Sultan, Magistrate Md Nur-e-Alam Siddique, Civil Surgeon Dr Md Abdur Razzak and Jail Superintendent Kamrul Islam were present during the execution.
Arif and six other JMB leaders including its founder Shayakh Abdur Rahman and second-in-command Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai were sentenced to death on May 29, 2006. The six were executed on March 29, 2007 after the Appellate Division upheld their sentence and the president turned down their mercy petitions.
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The four others executed were Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) Majlish-e-Sura members Ataur Rahman Sunny, Abdul Awal Molla alias Omar alias Shakil Ahmed and Amjad Hossain alias Khalid Saifullah, and suicide bomber Iftekhar Hassan Al Mamun.
Arif, who was absconding during the trial, was arrested on July 10, 2007 and appealed against his sentence. Finally the Appellate Division rejected his appeal on August 28 this year.
He is the first death-row convict executed at the Khulna jail after a decade. On May 9, 2004, the jail authorities hanged top criminal Ershad Sikder.
Hailing from Bandorgachhia village of Barguna, Arif's relatives were allowed to meet him at noon. He would be buried at his in-law's village in Bagerhat's Morelganj, family sources said.
Senior assistant judges of the Jhalakathi court Jagannath Pare and Sohel Ahmed were killed in a suicide bomb attack at Purba Chadkati of the town when they were going to the court on a microbus on November 14, 2005 as part of the JMB’s all-out attacks on the courts and law enforcers across the country.
Sohel died on the spot while Jagannath succumbed to his injuries at a hospital. JMB member Mamun, who was injured in the attack, was arrested from the spot.
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The JMB recently said that their members had conducted the suicide attacks after the August 17, 2005 series blasts as the then “government did not respond to their call for establishing Islamic rule in the country positively.”
After the execution of the six JMB leaders, its members shot dead Jhalakathi public prosecutor Haider Hossain who represented the state in the case “as the first revenge.”
A Jhalakathi court in February last year sentenced to death five members of the JMB for the murder of Haider.