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Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Court summons 2 over stealing Humayun Ahmed’s paintings

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A Dhaka court today summoned book trader Manzurul Azim Palash and his wife Ruma Chowdhury, asking them to appear before it on October 25 in a case filed over stealing some of paintings of celebrated novelist, screenwriter and filmmaker Humayun Ahmed.

Dhaka’s Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Md Tofazzal Hossain passed the order after accepting the probe report submitted by Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) on June 23 this year.

On June 29 last year, Humayun Ahmed’s wife actress Meher Afroz Shaon filed the case with the court of Tofazzal Hossain against the accused for their alleged involvement with committing such offences.

After the hearing, the magistrate recorded Shaon’s statements, took cognisance of the charges and directed PBI to submit a report after an investigation into the matter.

According to the case statement, the late writer drew some portraits along with his younger son Nishad Humayun back in 2012 when he was undergoing cancer treatment in New York. He handed over 24 of those paintings to Ruma Chowdhury and her ex-husband Bishwajit Shaha in June 2012 on the condition that those be returned to him unscathed.

At time, the couple tried to coax Humayun into selling the paintings, with the duo getting a commission of the sales. However, Humayun turned down the offer.

After several conversations following the writer’s death, they returned twenty of the paintings to his mother Ayesha Foyez in February 2013.

Years after the incident, the issue gained momentum after one of the stolen paintings resurfaced in Cumilla. Ruma’s present husband Palash, gave a Facebook post on March 31 claiming that an art exhibition displayed an original art piece of Humayun Ahmed.

The 10-day exhibition titled “Selected paintings of hundred artists from Bangladesh and India” was organised by Link Bangla, a venture of Palash.

The plaintiff alleged that event organisers did not obtain the painting legally and it was part of the four paintings that were not returned to Humayun’s family back in 2013.

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