28 February 2017, Tue, 1:24

Death-row convict ruling party leader now to walk free; Misuse of power exposed once again

Orders to hang Juba League leader Aslam Fakir, convicted for murder, were suspended at the last moment due to his ‘unnatural’ behaviour.

Later this was reduced to a 17-year imprisonment sentence. This too was revoked for “good behaviour” and reduced to a jail sentence of one year one month and 13 days.

And he is now to be freed around May or June this year on completion of this term.

Juba League is the youth front of ruling Bangladesh Awami League (AL) led by prime minister Sheikh Hasina.

On 2 September last year he was transferred from the Kashimpur jail in Gazipur to the Faridpur district jail. Faridpur district jail super Abdur Rahman confirmed that he would be released in May or June, after his sentences had been repeatedly reduced.

Aslam Fakir had been accused on 25 September 2005 of murdering Manikdaha union chairman Shaheb Ali alias Shaheb Miah.

Upon learning that Aslam Fakir would be released shortly, Shaheb Miah’s wife Paruli Begum, plaintiff in the case, told Prothom Alo, “After being sentenced to death, Aslam Fakir’s pleas for mercy had been rejected. Even so, the orders were withdrawn just before he was due to hang. I don’t know why he has been exempted.”

She went on to say, “I’ve heard he is to be released shortly. I fear for the lives of my two sons, daughter and myself.”

Lawyer Shahdeen Malik has said that anywhere in the world, the victim’s family is consulted before a convicted murderer is pardoned.

“If they have no objection, only then can the government take the mercy petition into consideration.”