Raju, the main accused in the murder case of journalist Mohiuddin Sarkar, has been killed in a gunfight, said the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB).
This is the first death from gunfight since the US imposed sanctions on RAB on 10 December last year citing allegations of serious human rights abuse by the elite force in Bangladesh.
The gunfight reportedly took place at around 2am on Sunday (17 April) at the Golabari border in Cumilla.
"A RAB team went to Golabari area during an anti-smuggling drive last night. Sensing RAB's presence, smugglers opened gunfire and attacked RAB. Our team members also fired back in retaliation," Major Mohammad Sakib Hossain, commander of Crime Prevention Company-2 of RAB-11, told The Business Standard today morning.
"One of the smugglers was found bullet-hit on the spot after the gunfight. He was rushed to Cumilla Medical College Hospital, where on-duty doctor declared him dead," Sakib Hossain added.
Raju is the son of Sadek Miah of Bishnupur area of Cumilla Adarsh Sadar upazila. He is accused in multiple drug cases. His body has been kept in the morgue of the hospital.
On Wednesday (13 April) night, journalist Mohiuddin was shot dead by miscreants in Hyderabadnagar village near the Indian border in Cumilla's Burichang upazila.
Mohiuddin's mother filed a case on 14 April against ten people mentioning three names including drug dealer Raju.
Mohiuddin Sarkar was a staff reporter for a local daily. After leaving journalism, Naeem used to work as a source for the police, RAB, drug control department, and the upazila administration.