Monday, June 11, 2007

Mayor Minu freed on bail; Minu goes into hiding

Mayor Minu freed on bail

Rajshahi Mayor and ex-BNP lawmaker Mizanur Rahman Minu was freed yesterday afternoon after the district and sessions judge granted him bail.

Minu along with two other BNP leaders were sent to jail on Wednesday in connection with an extortion case.

The two others-- Nazrul Huda, vice-president of Rajshahi district BNP, and Shafikul Haque Milon, former general secretary of Rajshahi city BNP-- were also freed at the same time.

Minu with his wife Salma Shahadat left the jail premises on one of his friend's private car at around 5:45pm.

Minu's elder brothers Hafizur Rahman Laki and Kashem Rizvi Ganu, ward commissioners including Mohammad Masud, Anjumand Ara and Rozi Parvin were present at the jail gate. But the mayor did not talk with anyone.

Earlier in the morning, District and Sessions Judge Abu Bakar Siddik heard Minu's lawyers and the public prosecutor (PP), Ekramul Haq, on his bail prayer.

Nearly 50 lawyers led by Mojibur Rahman Chowdhury and Ankur Sen pleaded for the mayor.

They told the court that there were no specific charges against the accused in the first information report.

However, the PP defended that police primarily found the extortion allegations to be true and pressed charges against 11 persons including Minu.

The PP also said Lutfar Rahman, budget-cum-accounts officer of Rajshahi City Corporation who was arrested by the joint forces a few months ago, revealed important information regarding Minu's involvement in corruption.

Minu went into hiding just after an hour of his bail on information that the Police Headquarters has directed to arrest him again.

Sources said the mayor went to his residence after he was freed from jail at around 5:45pm. He later visited Shah Makhdum Shrine to say his prayers, sources added.

"Police Headquarters again directed the police to arrest him after his bail and somehow he (Minu) got the information," said a police source adding the police were following him since his bail and saw him changing cars several times within a short time.

Police started raids at 7:00pm at his two houses and inquired about him to his relatives. But nobody could give any information about his whereabouts.

Police were raiding Minu's houses till filing of this report at 9:00pm.


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