Bangladeshi Student Tahmid Hasib Cleared of Dhaka Attack Charges

Bangladeshi authorities said he had fallen under suspicion because of his“behaviour and actions” during the siege.

2 min read
ISIS claimed responsibility for the Dhaka attack on 1 July 2016. (Photo: Altered by <b>The Quint</b>)

A Bangladeshi court formally exonerated a student at a Canadian university of involvement in the deadly cafe siege, two months after he was arrested and charged over the carnage.

Security forces named Tahmid Hasib Khan as a suspect in the weeks following the siege at the upmarket Dhaka cafe in July when Islamist militants killed 22 mostly foreign hostages.

Khan's family vehemently protested his innocence, saying he was in the cafe as a customer and was not connected to the five gunmen who hacked and shot to death the hostages in an attack claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

The court formally cleared the 22-year-old on Wednesday, three days after he was released on bail when police dropped the charges, Dhaka Metropolitan court public prosecutor Abdullah Abu said.

He (Khan) was exempted as police had not found any evidence against him. However, police today filed another case against Khan of non-cooperation with the investigators.

Khan, a University of Toronto student who was back in his homeland on leave, did not speak with reporters as he left the court.

Khan and Hasnat Karim, a British national of Bangladeshi origin, were both inside the cafe when gunmen staged their raid on 1 July, taking a group of mainly Western diners hostage.

But neither were seen in public after the end of the siege when commandos stormed the cafe.

Police had denied that the men were in their custody before announcing on 4 August that they had been arrested.

Abu said that Karim, whose family has also denied his involvement, remained in jail.

Bangladesh's national police chief has said the two had fallen under suspicion as a result of their "behaviour and actions" during the siege.

Reports in local media said Khan was seen holding a firearm and Karim strolling with the attackers on the roof.

(With inputs from PTI)

Liked this story? We'll send you more. Subscribe to The Quint's newsletter and get selected stories delivered to your inbox every day. Click to get started.

The Quint is available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, click to join.

Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!