The High Court on Monday cleared way for the lower court to resume the trial proceedings of a case filed against Odhikar secretary Adilur Rahman Khan and its director SM Nasir Uddin Elan under the Information and Communication Technology Act.
An HC bench of justice Enayetur Rahim and justice Shahidul Karim passed the order after rejecting a petition filed by the two accused.
Barrister Rukanuddin Mahmud stood for them while deputy attorney general Forhad Ahmed for the state.
On 10 June, 2013, Odhikar published a report, titled ‘Assembly of Hefajat-e-Islam Bangladesh and Human Rights Violations’, claiming that it had collected the names of 61 people killed during the evacuation of Hefajat activists by law enforcers at Shapla Chattar in the city’s Motijheel area on 5 May,
On 10 August, 2013, plainclothes police arrested Adilur Rahman Khan from near his Gulshan residence shortly after the filing of a general diary over the report.
On 4 September, 2013, the charge was framed against Adilur and Elan for publishing ‘fake, distorted and defamatory’ information under sections 57 (1) and 57 (2) of the Information Communication and Technology (ICT) Act that has a provision of imprisonment for 7-15 years’ and a fine as high as Tk one crore.
Later, the duo filed petitions seeking stay order of the trial.
Following their petition, the High Court issued a stay order for three months which was extended several times later.