Security agencies categorise attack on Zafar Iqbal as terrorist one


 DHAKA, March 04, 2018 (BSS) – The law enforcement agencies today said the attack on eminent writer Prof Mohammed Zafar Iqbal, who is now undergoing treatment at the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Dhaka, is a terrorist attack.

“We are sure the attack was a terror one and the arrestee Faijur Rahman, 24, is a militant. But, we have yet to confirm whether he is a self radicalized militant or instigated to be radical,” Commander of RAB-9 Lt Col Ali Haider Azad Ahmed told BSS.

Asked about the number of people involved in the attack, he said, “The detainee in primary interrogation has claimed to us he alone launched the attack. But, our experience says such types of attacks usually carry out by several people.”

“The detainee is now taking treatment under our custody as he was beaten severely soon after he stabbed Prof Iqbal. The extensive interrogation of the youth will be started after his recovery. We can exactly say you people (journalists) the exact number of the criminals involved in the attack upon completion of his interrogation,” he added.

Asked about the motive behind the killing he said, “We have yet to know the exact reason but the detainee told us he launched the attack as Prof Iqbal what they believed is the enemy of Islam.” He also said that they will hand over the detainee to police today, adding that they have taken several people including paternal uncle of the attacker under their custody for interrogation.

Asked about the measures taken by police after the incident, Sylhet Metropolitan Police (SMP) Commissioner Golam Kibria told BSS, “We have taken it seriously and started investigation into the matter soon after filing a case to this end.”

But, he declined to say anything about the motive and number of attackers saying, “Everything will be clear after completion of the attack.”

“An attempt to murder case was filed mentioning the name of one accused and more four to five unidentified persons” Officer-In-Charge of Jalalabad Police Station Shafiqul Islam told BSS this afternoon.

Registrar of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST), Ishfaqul Hussain filed the case with Jalalabad Police Station. The case number is 3. The name of the arrestee, Faizur Rahman alias Shafiqur Rahman, 24, a madrasha student, was mentioned in the case, the OC said. Faizur hailed from Jogdal village under Dirai Upazila of Sunamganj. He along with his family are now residing at Shekhpara area under Tukerbazar Union, he said, adding that they have detained maternal uncle of the arrestee in this connection.

Earlier on Saturday afternoon, Prof Iqbal, Head of the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering (EEE) of Shahjalal University of Science and Technology (SUST), came under a terror attack on the university campus in Sylhet on Saturday afternoon.

He was initially treated at the MAG Osmani Medical College and Hospital in Sylhet where he had been administered 27 stitches and given two bags of blood and was later flown to Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Dhaka last night.

Briefing the media about the health condition of Zafar Iqbal, Chief Cardiac Surgeon and Consultant Surgeon General of Bangladesh Armed Forces Major General Munshi Md Mojibur Rahman said this morning, “Professor Zafar Iqbal is now completely out of danger and fully conscious.”

Prof Iqbal, who is now at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the CMH, was stabbed four times on the back of his head, one each on the left arm and the back, he said, adding that the stab injuries were not so deep.

Health Minister Mohammed Nasim, Information Minister Hasanul Haq Inu, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Dr Mohammad Javed Patwary, visited Prof Iqbal at the hospital.

After visiting Prof Iqbal, Information Minister Hasanul Haq Inu expressed hope that it will take two or three days to return to his home.” The minister called upon all to make unison of all the democratic and progressive people against the militancy as the militants are still active in the country.

Echoing the same, the ruling Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader said, “The attack is a part of evil design to make the country destabilise and the fanatic groups are responsible for the attack.”

“The strength of the fanatic groups has been weakened but they have not yet been inactive and are taking preparation to carry out large scale attack,” he also said while distributing leaflets among the people at Baitul Mukarram as part of the programme to make the grand rally marking the March 7 speech of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.

However, Professor Yasmeen Haque, wife of Iqbal, in a press conference in the capital thanked Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for her prompt order to take effective measures to give his husband the best possible medical care and capture the people involved in the attack.