Civil rights activists who had protested against the arrest of 26 Bangladeshi citizens by Dhubri police officials in Assam on May 20, 2020, now allege that one of them, Bakul Mian has died already under mysterious circumstances.
They had written to the National Human Rights Commission authorities in Delhi about their arrest and especially the long confinement that local officials ordered. Says Mr. Kiriti Roy, Secretary of prominent rights group MASUM : All those arrested have valid passports and requisite VISA documents which they duly secured before they visited India. While returning, they had to report at Changrabandha on the Indo-Bangladesh border . But despite their best efforts, they failed to reach on time because of problems they faced during the post Covid lockdown period. ”
Mr. Roy has just written to the NHRS again, after receiving a complaint from Mr. Tanveer Rasul, Assistant High Commissisoner, Bangladesh High Commission. Reporting the sudden death of the late Mian, son of Omar Sarkar of Bangladesh apparently in police custody to the NHRC, Mr Roy alleged that it seemed to be a clear case of custodial death.
He called for an immediate inquiry into the incident by a Judicial Magistrate as by law prescribed, under the provisions of sec 176/1/A, of the CrPC.
In his second letter, Mr. Roy mentions the apparently casual attitude of the Police Superintendent of Dhubri district, who told him over the phone that Mr. Mian’s death had occurred owing to a heart attack in a hospital, not in police custody.
Curiously, the SP also gave Mr. Roy the phone number of another official, suggesting that the latter should be contacted after some time, not immediately. This naturally fuelled further speculation regdring the cause and the nature of Mr, Mian’s death. It is common knowledge that usually Assam-based police officials and other authority take a harder line towards visiting Bangladeshis , at times resulting on harassment and tensions. There was no official comment from the Assam administration on the matter, which will certainly have a diplomatic fallout, said officials.