Arrested ex-Bangladesh minister not aware of Interpol notice

Shillong, June 10 (IANS) Former Bangladesh minister Salahuddin Ahmed, arrested here in Meghalaya for trespassing into India, on Wednesday said he was not aware that Interpol has issued a red alert notice against him for “instigating violence” in Bangladesh.

“I am not aware that the Interpol has issued a red alert notice against me. The charges against me are all fake and baseless and I don’t like to further comment on it,” Ahmed told IANS after he appeared before the court of chief judicial magistrate K.M. Lyngdoh Nongbri.

“I always wanted to go back home (Bangladesh) since my family and children area there but there is so much of political rivalry in my country. There are lots of things happening there and many people are missing in Bangladesh,” said Ahmed, also the chief spokesperson of the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP).

The BNP leader, who has been charged with violating Section 14 of the Indian Foreigners Act, said he would prefer to move to a third country for further medical treatment if the Indian court allows him.

“I am under the legal procedure here in India. I leave it to the judgment of the court but if the court permits me, I will go (to a third country),” Ahmed, who earlier wanted to go Singapore for his medical treatment.

Asked if he would seek for political asylum in India, he said: “I am just facing the legal procedure. I would not like to comment as of now. Let the legal procedures get over.”

Earlier, Bangladesh Minister of State for Home Affairs Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal was quoted by the Bangladesh media that Ahmed would be arrested after his return to Dhaka and would be tried on charges of instigating violence during the BNP-led-20-party alliance sponsored three months hartal and blockade since January 6.

Ahmed, the communications minister during the government of BNP leader Khaleda Zia from 2001-06, was arrested on May 11 after people alerted authorities about some suspicious movements by a man in an area here.

On May 5, a lower court in Meghalaya granted bail to Ahmed with three conditions that he should not leave the court’s jurisdiction and after Ahmed’s wife Hasina furnished a bail bond of Rs.2 lakh.

However, appearance of Ahmed, who went missing from Bangladesh since March 10 this year, in Shillong still remains a mystery as police or central intelligence agencies are yet to crack out as to how he landed in Shillong.

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