Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) has stated that all legal rules and regulations have been followed to acquire the land for Kalabagan police station at Tentultala playground.
"The land acquired for Kalabagan police station is government property, according to a survey and is owned by the Housing and Public Works Ministry. When the land was allotted to DMP, all legal procedures were followed in this regard," said DMP Deputy Commissioner (Media and Public Relations) Md Faruk Hossain at a press briefing Tuesday (26 April).
He also noted that although the media reports seem like the DMP has illegally encroached on lands belonging to other organisations or individuals for constructing Kalabagan station it is not true.
According to a press release issued by DMP, the home ministry gave the approval to acquire 0.20 acres of land in Dhanmondi Mouja which the Tentultala field is a part of.
It advised the locals to use the nearby Kalabagan field instead of Tentultala playground.
"Kalabagan field is near Tentultala ground, the place of the proposed police station. There are opportunities to do social events including sports for children," the press release.
The DMP also claimed that the government has allocated the land for the construction of Kalabagan police station in compliance with all existing laws and regulations of the country.
"The issue of finding alternative playground for locals is not a concern of DMP," it said.
The Tetultala playground, under Ward-17 of Dhaka South City Corporation, has long been used as a playground for children and other social activities, like funeral prayer held by locals.
In a notice issued by the Dhaka district administration on 24 August last year, it was mentioned that the playground was proposed to be acquired by the government for the construction of Kalabagan police station. The notice mentioned the land as fallow.
Later, the residents of Kalabagan including children and youths, environmentalists, social, cultural and development activists started a movement protesting the notice on 11 September.
Around 11:30am Sunday (24 April), Syeda Ratna - one of the leading activists of the "Save Tentultala Playground" movement - and her 17-year-old son were brought to the Kalabagan police station. They were kept in separate custody for 13 hours.
People on social media condemned the police for keeping 17-year-old Abdullah in custody meant for adults and naming him in the case.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal on Monday had instructed Dhaka South City Corporation to find another location for the construction of Kalabagan police station.