The officer-in-charge and a sub-inspector of Pabna Sadar Police Station were withdrawn and suspended over allegations of arranging a marriage between a gang-raped woman and one of the rapists.
OC Obaidul Haque was closed to the police lines and SI Ekramul Haque was suspended after it became evident in primary investigation that the former arranged the marriage at the police station while the latter brought a marriage registrar and forced him to do the job, said Rafikul Islam, superintendent of police in the district.
They were also negligent in recording a rape case, he said.
The district administration formed a probe committee to look into the allegations. Another committee formed earlier by the police has been investigating the matter.
Meanwhile, two more accused in the gang-rape case have been arrested yesterday morning in Natore and Gazipur’s Tongi. Four of the five accused have been arrested so far.
Two of them have confessed to a court about raping the complainant, the SP said.
The woman’s brother earlier told reporters that the marriage on September 5 was arranged by the officers to save the people accused in the gang-rape case.
The woman, a mother of three, was also compelled at the police station to sign divorce papers that mentioned an older date to make it seem like the woman was a divorcee.
After the allegations were reported in the media, police in the district on Monday formed a three-member committee to probe the matter.
The woman filed a case on the same day accusing five persons of confining her to a room and gang-raping her multiple times on August 29 and August 31. The accused Russel, Shariful Islam Ghontu, Hossain Ali, Osman and Sanju are from different villages in Pabna Sadar.
Hossain Ali and Sanju were arrested yesterday. Only Osman remains absconding.
Police produced Hossain, Shariful and Sanju before a Pabna court yesterday.
ADMINISTRATION PROBE COMMITTEE
The administration in Pabna formed a probe committee headed by Additional District Magistrate Jahid Newaz following direction from the cabinet division, said Deputy Commissioner Kabir Mahamud.
The committee’s enquiry will complete by September 15. Its report would be submitted to the cabinet division, the DC added.
Meanwhile, Pabna Mohila Parishad formed a human chain in front of the press club demanding punishment of the rape accused and the police officers.
According to the complaint filed by the woman, Russel and Hossain, who are her acquaintances, took her to the house of one Osman and raped her several times on August 29.
She informed Russel’s parents about it the next day. On August 31, she went to local Awami League leader Shariful’s office in Tebunia area for an arbitration to settle the matter.
Shariful and his associate Sonju then kept her confined to the office and raped her several times. But she managed to flee at one point, the case statement read.
Ajam Uddin Khan, who registered the marriage, told reporters that he was forced to hold the marriage.