The son of a martyr yesterday described at the International Crimes Tribunal-2 that his father was tossed two or three feet in the air before thudding to the ground when the Pakistani army shot him at the instruction of Jamaat-e-Islami leader Abdus Subhan in Pabna on May 12, 1971.
“'See, how Joy Bangla is!' said Subhan Moulana as he kicked my father's body two or three times,” said Shamsul Alam, who saw the incident from 50 yards away.
Breaking down in tears, the 24th prosecution witness said that to save their lives, his grandfather took his hand and ran into a nearby sugarcane field while the occupation army started shooting at them. “But bullets missed us, and we saved ourselves hiding in the field.”
Shamsul, 57, said his father Mohiduddin Pramanik was an influential Awami League leader of Satbaria Union, and many residents of their village were involved with the party.
He said he heard heavy gunfire around 6:00am on May 12, 1971 from the west of their village and saw flames; people ran in different directions to save their lives.
“My grandfather asked us to go to Gajnar Beel, 7-8km from our village. My father and I stayed at home, as my father refused to leave the house.” Around 12:00 noon, the Pakistani army and Subhan, riding in two cars, arrived at their house, adjacent to Zila Parishad, he said.
“Seeing Subhan Moulana my father raised his hands and approached them. Subhan Moulana pointed a finger at my father and told the army that he was a leader. So, the Pakistani army opened fire on my father,” he said.
The Pakistani troops also set their houses on fire and left the village at about 2:00pm.
After coming out of the field, they heard that some villagers including Baju Pramanik, Jhoru Mondal, Mojibar Sheikh and Rajab Pramanik were also killed by the Pakistani army, he said.
Shamsul's father was buried that night.
The witness said he knew Subhan beforehand as he held different gatherings in Satbaria of Pabna. About two days before the killing, his father told him that Subhan had become secretary of Pabna Zila Peace Committee, an anti-liberation force in 1971, Shamsul said.
The defence of Subhan, who was produced at the court, completed cross-examining the witness. The proceeding was adjourned until today.