A Dhaka court has deferred the delivery of the verdict in Buet student Abrar Fahad murder case.
Judge Abu Zafar Md Kamaruzzaman of Dhaka Speedy Trial Tribunal-1 was supposed to announce the verdict in the sensational killing Sunday. However, the verdict was deferred till 8 December.
At the court, the judge said there was not ample time to prepare the verdict after analysing the arguments put forward by the lawyers of the state and the accused.
"It will take more time to prepare the verdict," he said while fixing the new date for delivering the verdict.
Earlier in the day, 22 accused among 25 were produced before the court.
The accused are Mehedi Hassan Rasel, Muhtasim Fuyad, Onik Sorker, Mehedi Hassan Robin, Ifty Mosharaf Sokal, Moniruzzaman Monir, Meftahul Islam Jiyon, Majedur Rahman, Muzahidur Rahman, Tabakhairul Islam Tanvir, Hossen Mohammad Toha, Jisan, Akash Hossain, Shamim Billah, Nazmul Shadat, Ajtesamul Rabbi Tanim, Morshed Omorto Islam, Mowaz Abu Horaira, Muntasir Al Jemi, Omit Shaha, Mujtaba Rafid, Istiaq Hassan Munna, Shamsul Arifin Rafad, Mizanur Rahman and Mahmud Setu.
Among the 25 accused, three - Jishan, Rafid and Tanim - remain absconding.
Special Public Prosecutor (PP) Abu Abdullah Bhuiyan said, "He (Judge Kamaruzzaman) has fixed 8 December as the date for the verdict as the preparations for it have not been completed."
The judge may have postponed the date due to insufficient time to write the verdict after reviewing the testimony of total 52 witnesses from plaintiffs and defendants, the PP told media.
Abrar's father Barkatullah said, "We have confidence in the court. We are hoping to get justice. We want all the accused to be punished for the brutal murder."
Defendants' lawyer Faruk Ahmed said the investigation into the case did not name the masterminds of the incident and did not mention them in the charge sheet.
He called for bringing the Buet authority under the law for alleged negligence in providing security to students.
"A vested quarter from outside has done it (murder) to create political instability in the country. That is why the plaintiffs could not provide video footage (of Buet hall) of that day from 8pm to 3am," he added.
Defendant Amit Saha's mother Devi Saha told journalists her son was not even present at the university residential hall on the day Abrar was murdered.
"He (Amit) did not even say anything on the messenger group online. He had been staying outside from two days earlier," she added.
Md Abu Taher, father of defendant Fuad, said verdicts of all accused are being given together which does not comply with the law.
"Those who were not directly involved in the killing are being treated equally (with killers)," he said.
Sub-inspector Nipen Biswas, in-charge of the Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court, said the accused were produced in the court from Dhaka's Keraniganj Central Jail around 9.30 am today.
The tribunal, on 14 November, fixed the date today (28 November) for delivering the verdict after completion of argument of both state and defendant.
Abrar Fahad, a second-year student of electrical and electronics engineering (EEE) department of Buet, was beaten to death by a group of Chhatra League men at the university's Sher-e-Bangla Hall on 7 October, 2019.
Abrar's father Barkatullah later filed a murder case with Chawkbazar Police Station.
The case was later transferred to the speedy trial tribunal, allowing a plea of Abrar's father.
On 13 November, 2019, Detective Branch (DB) Inspector and investigation officer of the case Wahiduzzaman submitted the charge sheet against the 25 accused.
On 15 September, 2020, the tribunal framed charges against all 25 accused in the case.
The court recorded statements of 46 witnesses among the 60 witnesses in the case.
On 14 March, this year, the arrested 22 accused in the case claimed their innocence while testifying in self-defence.