Ominous messages in Rizwanur phone

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By Staff Reporter
  • Published 25.10.07

Date: September 21

Time: 9.21am

SMS: Papa thik hai. Aapke liye ek letter rakhe ja raha hoon. Bhagwan sabko thik rakhe. (Papa, it’s okay. I’m leaving a letter for you. God bless everyone.)

The text message to Ashok Todi was the last that went out of Rizwanur Rahman’s mobile phone, one hour and nine minutes before his body was found on the railway tracks in Patipukur.

Eleven minutes earlier — at 9.10am — a text message from the phone had said: “Papa, there is five minutes before I will kill myself. Talk to me for the last time.”

The revelations came to light five days after CBI officials filed a murder case against Todi, Rizwanur’s father-in-law and a businessman.

The CID was in possession of the transcript of the messages found in Rizwanur’s phone.

“After going through the transcript, we suspect that he had written a letter to be given to Todi. In his last message to Todi, Rizwanur mentioned the letter,” a CBI officer said without making it clear whether it has been established without doubt that the computer graphics teacher had himself punched in the messages.

The Telegraph had reported today that the CBI was looking for a “suicide note” purportedly written by Rizwanur. The officials said the letter is very “important” to crack the case.

“The letter mentioned in the SMS to Todi can shed light on Rizwanur’s mental state. It is very vital to know what he had planned to do on that day. We also suspect that the letter may be a suicide note,” another CBI officer said.

But where is the letter?

“We got information that Rizwanur had written the letter on a computer a day before his death. He stayed at his aunt’s place on Shamsul Huda Road and had written the letter there. We have seized the computer and sent it to our lab to retrieve it,” an official said.

Rukbanur Rahman, Rizwanur’s brother, said the CBI has been asking for the letter. “During questioning, they asked me to hand over the letter. I was surprised as we do not have any idea of such a letter. The CBI told me the letter will help press charges of abetment against Todi. I told them that I was not aware of any such letter,” he said.

The CBI officials today found two letters from the drawer of the graphic designer’s desk in his Chowringhee Road office but did not reveal the contents.

According to the text messages found in the phone, an SMS had gone out at 9.14am to Rizwanur’s mother-in-law, Bimla. It said: “Mom hum apna jaan de denge five minutes mein. Mujhe ek baar uski (Priyanka) awaaz suna dijiye.”

A minute later, a call went to Todi’s phone and it lasted 147 seconds. Soon after, the SMS about the letter was sent.

Several calls were made from the phone thereafter but no text messages were sent. A message was in the outbox at 10.28am — two minutes before Rizwanur’s body was found — but it was unfinished, trailing off after “My”.

At 10.11am, Rizwanur called up Sujato Bhadra of the Association of Protection for Democratic Rights (APDR) and spoke to him for 79 seconds. At 10.12, he spoke to Swapnil Sengupta, a colleague, for 148 seconds.

Three minutes later, he called up Madhavi Chandak, one of his students, and spoke to her for 241 seconds. At 10.21, Madhavi sent him an SMS: “You are my guiding star. Don’t do this to me.” CID sources had earlier said Rizwanur had called her to say he would not be teaching her anymore.

A colleague and a student had sent two messages after his death at 11.15am and 11.20am. One said: “Please talk to us. Don’t take any wrong step.”

But Bhadra rubbished views that the tone of the messages suggested suicide. “This is a clear case of murder. Anyone could have sent the SMS from Rizwanur’s phone. When he spoke to me, he was not at all depressed. He wanted to meet me that afternoon.”