• Thursday, May 13, 2021
  • Last Update : 12:50 am

Departmental case against ex-DC Sultana, 3 others over journo Ariful's jailing

  • Published at 09:23 pm March 26th, 2020
Former Kurigram Deputy Commissioner (DC) Sultana Pervin, Ariful
Former Kurigram deputy commissioner Sultana Pervin, left, and Dhaka Tribune journalist Ariful Islam Reagan Collected

The four officials have also been asked why their jobs should not be terminated

The government has filed a departmental case against suspended deputy commissioner of Kurigram district, Sultana Pervin, and three other officials over the jailing of a Dhaka Tribune correspondent by a mobile court.

A notice was also served to the four officials, asking why they should not be terminated from their jobs, Public Administration Secretary Shaikh Yusuf Harun said on Thursday evening.

“The four officials are not getting any salary at present as they have been withdrawn from their posts and are waiting for a new posting, to be decided by the Ministry of Public Administration. They will receive salary when they are made OSD [officer on special duty],” he further said.

Ariful Islam Reagan, who is the Kurigram correspondent of Dhaka Tribune and online news portal Bangla Tribune, was detained and jailed by a mobile court in the early hours of March 14.

Executive Magistrate Rintu Bikash Chakma conducted the drive to arrest Ariful, sparking outrage among the journalist communities as well as human rights advocates across Bangladesh.

According to sources, Ariful had been getting threats for his earlier reports which went against the former Kurigram DC. Ariful had written a report about Sultana’s attempt to have a renovated pond named after her.

Besides, he had also reported about irregularities regarding appointments at the DC office.

During the drive, the mobile court said they had recovered drugs and alcohol from the journalist's residence, which his family termed absurd.

Ariful's wife Mostarima Nitu said her husband, a non-smoker, did not even chew betel.

“They did not search the house, nor had they recovered any drugs,” she said.

Ariful was blindfolded and tortured mercilessly at the deputy commissioner's (DC) office, his wife Nitu told reporters on March 15.

Amid protests, the government withdrew Senior Assistant Commissioner Nazim Uddin, Assistant Commissioners Rintu Chakma and SM Rahatul Islam on March 15 and assigned them to the Ministry of Public Administration.

Sultana was suspended on March 16 and placed under the ministry.

Ariful filed a case against the four with Kurigram Sadar police station on March 19, accusing them of questionable arrest, incarceration and torture.

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