BANGLADESH – Torture on Mahmudur Rahman, acting editor of an opposition daily
15 June 2010 2:35 am

After forcing to close the Bengali daily Amar Desh on 1 June 2010, the government of Bangladesh arrested its editor. Below is the report by FORUM-ASIA member Odhikar.

On 12 June 2010, after being in remand for three days, Mr. Mahmudur Rahman, acting Editor of the Daily Amar Desh, was brought before the court of Magistrate Kamrunnahar Rumi.  He was taken into remand for further questioning in relation to case 2 (6) 2010, lodged at the Tejgaon Police Station.  At the Magistrates Court, Mr. Mahmudur Rahman was able to speak about the inhuman and degrading treatment he had been subject to.

On 09 June 2010, even though the Magistrates Court had ordered that he be taken in remand to the Tejgaon Police Station, in contravention to these orders, he was kept in the Cantonment Police Station, inside the Cantonment area.  According to Mr. Mahmudur Rahman, on the night of 10th June, at around a quarter to two, five or six men entered his cell and removed his clothes.  They then proceeded to jab him very hard with their elbows in his chest and back, whereupon he lost consciousness. When he awoke, he found himself lying in the room of the Second Officer of the Cantonment Police Station.  He was not questioned that day.

On 12 June 2010, Magistrate Kamrunnahar Rumi ordered that Mr. Mahmudur Rahman be sent to jail and be given a full medical check -up as per jail regulations. Mr. Mahmuder Rahman was unable to stand on the dock and the Magistrate allowed him to sit.  The Magistrate also allowed Mr. Mahmudur Rahman’s lawyers to meet him for half an hour before he was taken to jail.

On the same day, 12 June 2010, the police of the Detective Branch of Dhaka Metropolitan area submitted an application seeking a 4-day remand to question Mahmudur Rahman regarding case (Kha)/8/9(1)/11/13, filed at the Uttara Police Station under the Anti-Terrorism Act 2009. The remand was granted by Magistrate Rashed Kabir. Mahmudur Rahman was taken to the Detective Branch offices in Dhaka the same day, without any medical check-up.

A note of reminder: Mr. Mahmudur Rahman, acting Editor of the Daily Amar Desh was arrested from the newspaper’s office at around 4:00 am on 02 June 2010.