Chief of Ahle Hadith Andolan (Ahab) Asadullah Al Galib and five other accused were acquitted yesterday in a case filed in connection with the explosions at a drama festival in Takier Bazar of Gaibandha on December 20, 2004.
Additional District and Sessions Judge Sharafuddin Azad delivered the verdict in a packed courtroom, where Galib and the five accused were present, saying that the prosecution failed to produce adequate evidence.
The five charge-sheeted accused are Habibur Rahman Jubayer, Raju Sarder, ATM Taibur Rahman, Harun-ur-Rashid and Rawnakul Islam Khushi. All six received bail earlier.
Closing arguments of the prosecution and the defence concluded on June 12.
The prosecution said on the night of December 20, 2004, four bombs exploded near the stage in Takier Bazar of Palashbari upazila, Gaibandha injuring 15 people. Palashbari police filed the case against 21 people and Galib was shown arrested in the case.
On April 23, 2005 charge sheet against the six were submitted. Charges were framed under Explosive Substances Act, 1908.
The defence said the play was going on without prior permission from the administration and there was a dispute within the theatre group.
Blaming rival groups for the blasts, the defence said the sentiment of locals was also against the play.
Galib is still accused in eight criminal cases filed in different districts. He was acquitted in criminal cases filed in Rajshahi, Naogaon and Bogra.
He is still under arrest in other cases and was brought to the court under strict security. Supporters of Ahab thronged the court premises to have a glance of their leader.