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Dhaka Tribune

Imran H Sarker released after questioning

RAB had detained him while he was leading a demonstration at Shahbagh, protesting the killings of suspected drug traders in 'gunfights' amid the government's nationwide anti-narcotics drive

Update : 08 Jun 2018, 08:42 PM

Gonojagoron Moncho spokesperson Imran H Sarker was released by Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) after being questioned for around six hours on Wednesday.

Earlier, Imran was detained by a RAB team from Dhaka’s Shahbagh in the afternoon.

RAB 3 Commanding Officer Lt Col Emranul Hasan confirmed the matter to Dhaka Tribune.

Imran was staging a demonstration protesting the "gunfights" in which more than 100 suspected drug pushers have been killed in the government's nationwide anti-drug drive over the last one month.

Dhaka Tribune photographer Mehedi Hasan witnessed the firebrand activist being whisked away in a white unmarked microbus.

He also witnessed the scuffle between Imran's fellow activists and RAB personnel as they tried to drag Imran into the vehicle.

RAB official Emranul had said Imran was detained because he was causing a nuisance on the street by holding a public meeting illegally. 

In this photo, Rapid Action Battalion members are seen beating some demonstrators as they try to protect Gonojagoron Moncho spokesperson Imran H Sarker from being detained by the elite law enforcement agency at Shahbagh on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

“Imran had been warned by police once before for trying to hold public meetings without proper permission. But he did not pay heed to the warning and held another public meeting today [Wednesday] without acquiring the proper permission,” he told the Dhaka Tribune. 

“The process to take legal action against him is underway,” the RAB official had added prior to Imran’s release.

Meanwhile, Jibanananda Jayanta, one of the organizers of Gonojagoron Moncho, said law enforcement agencies once again tried to obstruct their scheduled program on Wednesday. 

“When we tried to protest an injustice like extrajudicial killing, the government used law enforcement to stop us in an undemocratic manner. They [the government] are acting like an autocratic government when there is not even a state of emergency in the country. Every citizen has the right to protest in a democracy,” he told the Dhaka Tribune. 

“We want the immediate and unconditional release of Imran. We will announce our next course of action later,” he added.

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