Wednesday, June 24th, 2020

Photojournalist Kajol not granted bail in Digital Security Act case

Published 10:25 pm | June 24, 2020

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Online Desk : A Dhaka court on Wednesday denied bail to photojournalist Shafiqul Islam Kajol, who has been arrested in a Digital Security Act case.
Metropolitan Magistrate Dhiman Chandra Mondol did not give him bail during the virtual hearing of his bail plea, which was submitted Tuesday by Kajol’s lawyer Barrister Jyotirmoy Barua.

The case was filed at the city’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar Police Station back in March. Kajol was shown arrested in it on Tuesday by the same court.

According to the court, Kajol was denied bail as he was named in the First Information Report (FIR) and already shown arrested in the case filed under non-bailable Sections 25, 26, 29 and 31 of the Digital Security Act.

Court sources said that case investigation officer Inspector Motlubur Rahman, of police’s Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit, said they would file a remand petition in the case, but did not mention when.

During the hearing, Kajol had joined the virtual hearing via videoconference from Dhaka Central Jail in Keraniganj.

Kajol, who had previously worked as a photojournalist at national dailies such as the “Dainik Samakal” and “Banik Barta,” is the editor of the fortnightly magazine “Pokkhokal.”

He had gone missing on March 10, a day after the case was filed by Awami League’s Magura-1 MP Saifuzzaman Shikhor with Sher-e-Bangla Nagar police station in Dhaka on March 9.

Kajol and 30 others, including Manabzamin Editor Matiur Rahman Chowdhury, were accused in the case, filed under the Digital Security Act, for publishing and sharing a news article on social media regarding expelled Jubo Mohila League leader Shamima Noor Papia.

In total, three cases were filed against Kajol at the capital’s Sher-e-Bangla Nagar, Kamrangirchar and Hazaribagh police stations under the Digital Security Act in March.

After his 53-day disappearance, Kajol was detained by the members of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) at the Benapole border in Jessore on May 3. He was produced before a Jessore court the same day.

Although that court granted him bail in the case, he was sent to jail as Kotwali police brought another charge against Kajol under Section 54 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

On May 5, a Dhaka court had set June 1 to hear a petition submitted by the police to show Kajol arrested in this case.

On June 16, Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Mohammad Jasim directed police to produce Kajol in a Dhaka court on June 23 in connection with the case. He also directed Dhaka Central Jail authorities to bring the journalist in from the Jessore Central Jail.

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