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Pradeep, Liakat in condemned cells as ordinary prisoners

Former OC of Teknaf Police Station Pradeep Kumar Das and Baharchhara Investigation Centre’s Inspector Liakat Ali, who were sentenced to death in Major (Retd) Sinha murder case on Monday, have been shifted to the condemned cell of Cox’s Bazar District Jail.

They were shifted to the condemned cell immediately after they were taken to the jail from the Cox’s Bazar District and Session Judge court.

Besides, the division of the duos was cancelled, said Cox’s Bazar Distrcit Jail super Nesar Alam.

“Both Pradeep Kumar Das and Liakat Ali have been kept in seperate condemned cells after they were brought here from court. Their division facilities have also been cancelled. They are now ordinary prisoners.”

He said, “Both of them are now physically well and mentally normal. They took food in time. None came to meet or talk to them. They remain silent.”

Jail sources said both Pradeep and Liakat were worn prisoner’s uniform. They will have to remain in condemned cells if the upper court stayed or cancelled their death sentences.

Cox’s Bazar’s senior lawyer and Sinha murder case counsel Mohammad Jahangir said if a convict is awarded death sentence in a court of law, all the related documents, case diary, testimonies of the witnesses etc need to be sent to the High Court within seven days after pronouncement of the verdict. These documents need to be sent in a special packet made of ‘red colour’ cloth. So, according to the rule, the copy of the verdict of condemned convicts Pradeep Kumar Das and Liakat Ali would also be sent to the High Court in Dhaka.

“The High Court needs to be apprised of judgement of death sentence. A death sentence can’t be executed until and unless the High Court is apprised of it. Besides, the convicts can make appeal against the verdict. If the plaintiff and defendant are not satisfied with the verdict, they can move to the upper court,” he said.

Meanwhile, Teknaf Police Station’s OC (sacked) Pradeep Kumar Das and Baharchhara Investigation Centre’s inspector (sacked) Liakat Ali who were given death sentences in retired army Major Sinha murder case, have been kept in Cox’s Bazar District Jail’s condemned cells. They will receive all kinds of facilities as prisoners as per the jail code, said Cox’s Bazar jail super Nesar Alam.

He said as the first class gazetted officers, both Pradeep and Liakat received division in jail. Since both of them have been sentenced to death, their division has been cancelled.

A Cox’s Bazar court on Monday afternoon handed down death penalty to sacked Teknaf Police Station OC Pradip Kumar Das and former sub-inspector Liakat Ali for killing Major (retd) Sinha Md Rashed Khan at night on July 31, 2020.

The court also sentenced sub-inspector Nanda Dulal Rakshit, constable Rubel Sharma, ASI Sagar Deb, Nurul Amin, Nizam Uddin and Mohammad Ayaz Uddin to life imprisonment.

The seven accused–Armed Police Battalion (APBn) sub-inspector Md Shahjahan Ali, constables Md Rajib and Md Abdullah, and police station’s constables Safanul Karim, Kamal Hossain, Liton Mia and Abdullah Al Mamun who were acquitted by the court have returned to their respective homes.

It may be mentioned that at night on July 31, 2020, Major (Retd) Sinha Md Rashed Khan was killed in police firing at Baharchhara police check-post on Marine Drive Road in Teknaf upazila of Cox’s Bazar district.

The 36-year-old former army officer, who served at the Special Security Force tasked with guarding the president and prime minister, had gone into early retirement to pursue his interests.

He had been staying at a resort in Cox’s Bazar’s Himchhari with three others for around a month to film a travel documentary.

Sources said Pradeep Kumar Das ordered as many as 144 extrajudicial killings during 22 months in the name of eliminating drug dealers when he was Teknaf Police Station OC. The incidents left 204 people dead. All the victims of extrajudicial killings were described as ‘drug dealers’ by Pradeep following their brutal murders.