The nine survivors of the Mizdah attack who have returned home bear horrifying signs of torture on their body – some of them freshly healed bullet wounds, some had battered limbs
- 30 migrants including 26 Bangladeshis were killed in the shooting
- 12 Bangladeshis survived the massacre, but three are yet to come back
- Those who returned are still bearing horrifying signs of torture on their body
Firoz Bepari, from Madaripur, went to Libya in the hope of bringing fortune to his family.
However, the deadly shooting in the Libyan town of Mizdah on 26 May this year dashed his dream and instead of becoming the bread earner, he has apparently become a burden for his family.
Firoz was shot in the incident and was later thrown into a garbage dump, and got paralysed.
"I was permanently paralysed in the attack," Firoz told reporters while walking on a crutch at the CID office in Dhaka on Sunday.
"I went to Libya to change the fate of myself as well as that of my family. But I came back as a burden to the family, as I have to live with paralysis all my life," he uttered, staring at a bleak future.
Firoz Bepari along with eight other survivors of the deadly attack, in which 30 migrants including 26 Bangladeshis were killed and 12 others injured, returned home on a special flight of Borak Airlines on 30 September.
There were a total of 12 survivors, but three are yet to come to Bangladesh, said the criminal investigation department.
The ones who have returned are still bearing horrifying signs of torture on their body – some of them freshly healed bullet wounds, some had battered limbs, and there is Firoz who has been permanently disabled and has to move on crutches.
The nine survivors of the attack who have been brought back by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) are Firoz Bepari, Janu Miah, Omar Sheikh, Sajal Miah, Tariqul Islam, Bakul Hossain, Mohammad Ali, Sohag Ahmed, and Saidul Islam. And Bappidatta, Samrat Khalasi and Sajid are yet to bring back to Dhaka as they are getting treatment in a Lybia hospital.
Sharing his experience, Janu Miah from Bhairab of Kishoreganj told the media that they along with other Bangladeshis reached Libya's Tripoli after a few months of a perilous journey through India-Dubai-Egypt and Bengazi.
"Sometimes we travelled on air and sometimes walked through the border. After at least five months of a perilous journey we could reach Lybia," he added.
"On 26 May at around 1 pm local time the mafia came to our camp to physically torture us – this was a daily routine, of course, but that day they indiscriminately tortured us," narrated one survivor, Janu Miah.
"There were around 100 to 150 people from Ghana, Nigeria, and Sudan, among whom around 30-35 were women. The Libyan mafia started by beating them up…and on that day, they retaliated. They killed a member of the mafia," he narrated.
"Then other members of the mafia gang came and fired at us indiscriminately. That is how 26 of us died, and 12 of us got injured," Janu said.
"Later we were rescued and taken to a hospital but the hospital authorities refused to admit us. Doctors said we have no chance of survival. Then we were taken to another hospital, but we were not allowed to get treatment there either."
"Later in the morning of 27 May, 12 of us were thrown into a heap of garbage in the desert. After walking 2-2.5 kilometers from there and found a house of a Sudanese camel-herder. But there is no shelter in the house for us.
"There we saw a Libyan citizen who informed the army about us. Army personnel then came and admitted us to Tripoli University Medical College Hospital. Even after being admitted there, our treatment was not started. Only the veranda of the hospital was left to us," he said while breaking into tears.
"We had to wait until the Bangladeshi embassy came before treatment begun. My surgery was done at 1 am in the night," Janu Miah said.
Following the briefing, the survivors were taken to Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's court to give their statements about what happened in Libya.
Meanwhile, CID's Organised Crime DIG Abdullah Hale Baki said 26 cases have been filed so far in this regard.
"Of which, 15 are being investigated by the CID. In the meantime, 44 accused have been arrested. We are also working in coordination with other organisations concerned. No one involved in the incident will be spared," he added.
Responding to a question, Syeda Jannat Ara, Special Superintendent of Police for Organised Crime, CID, said a red notice would be issued through Interpol next week to arrest 8 to 10 accused while they are absconding abroad.