A virtual court in Dhaka today refused to entertain the bail petitions of cartoonist Ahmed Kabir Kishore and writer Mushtaq Ahmed as a seven-day remand prayer is currently pending against them in connection with a case filed against them under the Digital Security Act.
Metropolitan Magistrate Sadbir Yasir Ahsan Chowdhury of Virtual Court-2 passed the order after the arrestees' lawyers submitted two separate bail petitions.
In the order, the court proclaimed that, as the investigating officer Sub-Inspector Jamshedul Alam of Ramna Police Station had submitted a seven-day remand prayer against the duo on May 7 is currently pending, the bail petitions and the remand prayer will be heard after the reopening of regular courts.
All operation of regular courts are currently suspended due to the nationwide shutdown induced by the prolonged coronavirus pandemic.
Kishore and Mushtaq are among 11 people -- including two journalists -- who were charged with "spreading rumours and carrying out anti-government activities" under the Digital Security Act on May 6.
Rab-3 Assistant Director Abu Bakar Siddique said Swedish-Bangladeshi journalist Tasneem Khalil who runs Netra News, US-based journalist Shahed Alam and blogger Asif Mohiuddin are also among those named in the case.
According to the FIR, Kishore was picked up on May 5 from his Kakrail home. It mentioned that upon interrogation, he disclosed the name of Mushtaq who was then apprehended from his Lalmatia house on the same day. However, Mushtaq's family alleged that he was picked up on the early hours of May 4.
Kishore and Mushtaq landed in jail after they were produced before a Dhaka court on May 6.