A special tribunal in Dhaka today framed charges against five Patuakhali men for allegedly committing crimes during the country’s Liberation War in 1971.
The three-member International Crimes Tribunal-1 led by Justice Anwarul Haque fixed April 26 for recording prosecution’s opening statements and testimony of their witnesses, Prosecutor Rezia Sultana Chaman, told The Daily Star.
The accused -- Solaiman Mridha, 86, Esahaq Shikder, 83, Abdul Goni Hawlader, 72, Md Awal alias Awal Moulavi, 69, and Abdus Sattar Pyada, 65, of Patuakhali Sadar upazila -- are in jail.
The prosecution on October 13 last year pressed two charges against the five and the tribunal took the charges into cognisance on November 17 same year.
Of them, Esahaq was a member of Patuakhali Peace Committee while the rest were members of Razakar Bahini, according to the prosecution and investigation agency of the ICT-1.
On May 4, 1971, the accused along with a group of Pakistani army killed 17 people of Itbaria village, torched and looted 21 houses, abducted six children and 15 women, whom they confined to Patuakhali Circuit House and raped for 10 days, according to the case statement.