The Rapid Action Battalion yesterday filed two cases against DNCC ward councillor Tarequzzaman Rajib under the arms and narcotics acts yesterday.
The cases were filed after Rajib was handed over to Vatara Police Station by Rab last night, hours after he was detained from his friend’s home in the capital’s Bashundhara Residential Area in a drive against corruption.
Rab seized seven bottles of foreign liquor, an illegal pistol, three bullets and Tk 33,000 in cash from the Bashundhara house.
The councillor was produced before the Metropolitan Magistrate’s Court around 11:15pm yesterday where police prayed for a 20-day remand for Rajib -- 10 days for each case filed.
After the hearing, Metropolitan Magistrate Yeasmin Ara placed Rajib on a 14-day remand -- seven days for each case.
Rajib’s arrest came eight days after the arrest of Habibur Rahman Mizan, another Dhaka North City Corporation councillor and former general secretary of Mohammadpur thana Awami League, from Moulvibazar’s Sreemangal upazila on October 11.
Meanwhile, after the second raid at Rajib’s Mohammadpur home and office early yesterday, Rab Executive Magistrate Sarwar Alam sentenced Rajib’s accomplice Sadek for ruining evidence such as important documents, and for non-cooperation during the drive.
Rab also recovered a deposit slip of Tk five crore from his office.
The law enforcers alleged that they could not find anything suspicious in Rajib’s home as all evidence had been removed after he sensed that a raid would take place.
Hours after his arrest, Rajib lost the post of joint general secretary in Jubo League’s Dhaka north unit for breach of discipline.
A group of locals brought out a rally in Mohammadpur to celebrate the arrest of Rajib. Most of them were harassed by Rajib and his men on different occasions.
They said they could not protest against Rajib out of fear as he was backed by an influential ruling party leader.
A hawker, based in Katasur area, said he had to pay Rajib’s men Tk 120 every day. He hopes that extortion in the area will now stop.
Rajib, who allegedly made a huge amount of money illegally since he became the councillor of ward-33, had been underground since October 12, sources said.
Recently, several media outlets have run reports saying he has been involved in various illegal activities.
About six years ago, Rajib used to live in a small room on the ground floor of an apartment building in Mohammadpur. He worked as an assistant to his father, a carpenter, and ran a small tea stall in the area, according to the reports.
His life turned around after he joined the politics of Jubo League, the youth wing of the ruling Awami League. He was elected ward councillor in 2014.
According to media reports, he currently owns a duplex in the same area, several cars and assets worth crores.
The reports also said he had multiple cases filed against him with different police stations.
Since September 18, Rab and police have raided different areas and arrested a number of leaders of the ruling party and its affiliated bodies over the past month.
The list includes expelled Dhaka South Jubo League president Ismail Chowdhury Samrat, his accomplice Arman, expelled organising secretary of Jubo League’s Dhaka south unit Khalid Mahmud, Kalabagan Krira Chakra President and ex-Krishak League leader Shafiqul Alam Firoz, Jubo League leader and businessman GK Shamim, Mohammedan’s Director-in-Charge Lokman Hossain Bhuiyan.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has recently, on different occasions, said the anti-graft drive would continue.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan yesterday said, “Those involved in tender manipulation, casino business, terrorism and corruption will be brought to book. Those who amassed illegal wealth are also being brought under the ambit of law.”
MIZAN SENT TO JAIL
A Dhaka court yesterday rejected a bail petition and sent ward councilor Habibur Rahman Mizan to jail in a money laundering case.
Metropolitan Magistrate Md Tofazzal Hossain passed the order after Criminal Investigation Department Inspector Md Giaus Uddin produced Mizan before the court upon expiry of his seven-day remand.
Giaus, also the investigation officer of the case, said Mizan gave important information about the money laundering. The information was being verified.
“Mizan needs to be confined to jail until the investigation is complete,” the IO added.
Meanwhile, the defence submitted a petition saying his client, Mizan, was implicated in the case as part of a conspiracy to harass him.