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4 Jamaat leaders sued for genocide in 1971 PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 26 January 2008

Staff Correspondent

Four top leaders of the Jamaat-e-Islami — its ameer Matiur Rahman Nizami, secretary-general Ali Ahsan Mujahid, assistant secretaries-general Abdul Kader Mollah and Qamaruzzaman — and six others were sued again on Thursday for their alleged involvement in massacres in Mirpur, Pallabi and Mohammadpur in Dhaka during the War of Independence in 1971.

Md Ameer Hossain Mollah, an injured freedom-fighter of Sector-2 and a resident of Duwari in Pallabi, lodged the case with the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's Court in Dhaka.

After hearing the complaint, metropolitan magistrate Imran Hossain Chowdhury ordered the officer-in-charge of Pallabi police station to register it as the First Information Report and take action in accordance with the law.

Others accused in the case are Jamaat-e-Islami's central leader Sardar Abdus Salam, former general secretary of Islami Chhatra Sangha Mir Abul Kasem, three non-Bengalis — Akhtar Gunda, Nawaz and Doma — who are now hiding in Pakistan, and one Khaza Ashim Uddin who is dead. In his complaint Ameer Mollah said that Nizami, Mujahid and Qamaruzzaman — led by Abdul Kader Mollah — fired at a group of freedom-fighters led by Mirpur-Mohammadpur thana unit commander Zahiruddin Babar and his assistant Mominul Haque when they raided the hide-out of the accused on December 18, 1971.

'I was shot in my right leg and arm while my co-fighter Abdus Sattar was killed during the heavy fighting,' said Ameer in his petition. He also said that Pakistani troops in helicopters on April 24 landed in Albadi village at Pallabi beside the river Turag and, along with some 100 people led by Kader Mollah, opened fire simultaneously on the innocent villagers from the eastern side of the village and massacred many of them.

'As many as 64 villagers were killed — 21 of whom were my relatives — in the firing by the Pakistan army and Kader's anti-people non-Bengali armed cadres,' claimed the plaintiff. He also said that the joint onslaught also killed another group of 344 people including 280 farmers and paddy harvesters who had arrived there from other districts to supplement their low incomes. The dead were dumped into three wells dug before and sealed unceremoniously after the slaughter.

And the whole village was torched as well. While all those atrocities were being committed, the plaintiff with his family had hidden themselves in a nearby swamp. Ameer alleged that Kader Mollah also initiated a training programme for 70/80 Biharis to bolster the spirit of Pakistani integration and kill the patriotic Bengalis who wanted independence. Inspired by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's historical speech on March 7, 1971, Ameer had raised a volunteers' army which had been given rudimentary training at Iqbal Hall of Dhaka University

. The plaintiff said he was shocked to hear the anti-liberation elements speaking disparagingly about the War of Independence and freedom-fighters, 36 years after liberation and the creation of Bangladesh. Ameer said he had not been able to file a case against those killers before January 11, 2007 because of 'obvious obstacles'.

He said he had filed the case now since the judiciary has become independent of the executive. He demanded that the accused be arrested and tried and punished befittingly. Some 80 unidentified non-Bengalis were also accused in the case and 15 witnesses were mentioned.

On Dec 5, 2007, freedom-fighter Fazlur Rahman of Keraniganj filed a treason case against some of the accused in the present case, which was not accepted by the court. On Dec 17 that year another freedom-fighter, Mozaffar Ahmed Khan, filed a case against Nizami, Mujahid and others for killing freedom-fighters. The case is being investigated by the Keraniganj police.

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