Sunday, May 25, 2008

Prof Taher's family, RU teachers feel insecure as Salehi released


Family members of murdered Rajshahi University (RU) teacher Dr S Taher Ahmed and many other RU teachers are feeling insecure after release of key killer-suspect Salehi from jail.

Mahbubul Alam Salehi was freed from jail on Thursday afternoon after a Rajshahi court acquitted two persons including him. The court awarded death to four persons including RU teacher Dr Mia Mohammad Mohiuddin.

"I am anxious about security of my son and daughter. We are in fear. We cannot tell what everybody knows," said Sultana Ahmed, Taher's wife.

"We faced pressure while running the case. Now we are thinking about our security," said Taher's son Sanjid Alvi Ahmed.

Expressing anxiety over Salehi's release, several senior RU teachers of RU said they are not satisfied with the trial of Prof Taher's killing while trial of another RU teacher's killing is yet to be completed.

"Shibir men who were always after progressive teachers will be desperate after Salehi's release," said a senior teacher.

"Jamaat-Shibir men tried to influence the case by threatening the previous government to create anarchy throughout the country. They also sheltered Salehi although he was sought after by the court. His release might lead to deterioration of the law and order," said another teacher.

Prosecution lawyer Golam Arif Tipu said, "There was no eyewitness in Prof Taher murder case. The trial was done following confessional statements and circumstantial evidences."

"Salehi was acquitted on the benefit of doubt raised due to contradictions between the judicial confessions and medical reports. But the law points by which the other accused were punished, were sufficient to prove Salehi's involvement," he said.

Expressing similar opinion, another prosecution lawyer Hamidul Haque said,

"Salehi's involvement and his suspicious activities during and after the murder were revealed by judicial confessions and several witnesses."

Salehi's lawyer Abu Mohammad Selim said, "The court considered part of the judicial confessions to be true. But the part involving Salehi was not true that was proved by the post mortem report".

He added that the prosecution could not also prove any rivalry between Salehi and Prof Taher during the trial.

Three killers Jahangir, Salam and Nazmul provided judicial confessions that Salehi put a pillow over Taher's face and sat on it after confirming his death.

They also stated that Salehi helped them dumping Taher's body into a sewerage well behind Taher's house.

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