Dhaka, Apr 26 (EFE).- A Bangladesh court on Tuesday sentenced a “self-radicalized” youth to life term for attempting to murder a renowned academic and secular writer Muhammed Zafar Iqbal in 2018 in the northeastern city of Sylhet.
Judge Nurul Amin of Sylhet Anti-Terrorism Tribunal also fined Faizul Hasan 20,000 taka ($230) or an additional jail term of six months if he defaults, prosecutor Mominur Rahman Titu told EFE.
Another accused in the case was handed a four-year imprisonment while four others were acquitted, added the prosecutor.
In July 2018, the police charged six people including Hasan and his family members in the case related to the attempt on the life of Iqbal.
Hasan was charged with attempt to murder, while the others were booked for assisting him and concealing evidence.
However, at the time of filing the charges, the police said it did not find a connection between Hasan and any radical group, describing him as a self-radicalized man, who, after attending several Islamic seminars, felt that professor Jafar Iqbal was an atheist and should be killed.
Iqbal was attacked and injured on Mar.3, 2018 during an open-air program on the campus of Shahajalal University of Science and Technology, where he taught computer since and engineering.
The attacker, who had identified himself as a student of a madrassa, or Islamic religious school, in Sylhet, stabbed Iqbal several times in the back before being subdued by the students and law enforcement officials present at the event.
Iqbal, who returned to teaching soon after and later went on to retire from the university, has been recognized for his literary work in the genre of science fiction, “Copotronic Sukh Dukkho” (Copotronic joy and pain) and “Dipu Number Two.”
In 2015, the writer’s name, along with 18 others including several ministers and bloggers, appeared in a letter by a radical Islamist group threatening them for being “enemies of Islam,” “atheists” and “satanic.”
Between 2013 and 2016, Bangladesh suffered a wave of Islamist attacks, with the assassinations of members of religious minorities, foreigners, homosexual activists, intellectuals and bloggers critical of fundamentalism. EFE