PM seeks help for war crimes trial
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday sought cooperation of all, including freedom fighters and believers in the spirit of the War of Liberation, in holding the trial of the war criminals in Bangladesh.
“I've firm trust and faith in my countrymen and I believe that we'll get cooperation from all in holding the trial of the war criminals. We've already begun the trial…Insha-Allah the trial will continue,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina also expressed her strong resolve that the trial of the war criminals would certainly be completed on the soil of Bangladesh.
She was addressing a function at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in the capital marking the unveiling of plaques of commercial and residential building projects of the Muktijoddha Kallyan Trust through the digital system.
The prime minister directed the authorities concerned to preserve the mass graves of 1971 to project to the future generation as a glaring proof of the atrocities perpetrated by the Pakistani occupation forces and their local collaborators.
She also asked the Ministry of Liberation War Affairs to take necessary steps so that the freedom fighters and their heirs can get the privileges and benefits that have been announced by the government.
The four projects of the Muktijoddha Kalyan Trust are construction of residential and commercial building in the capital's Gajnabi Road in Mohammadpur; construction of multistoried commercial building 'Tower 71' on sharing basis; 'Joy Bangla Commercial Building' at Agrabad in Chittagong and 'Residential City Bijoy Niketon' at Postogola in the capital.
State Minister for Liberation War Affairs AB Tajul Islam and Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the Liberation War Affairs Ministry Rafiqul Islam also spoke at the function, chaired by the secretary of the ministry Mizanur Rahman.
Managing Director of the Muktijoddha Kalyan Trust Maj Gen (retd) AK Mohammad Ali Shikder gave the address of welcome.
The prime minister recalled that Father of the Nation Bangabandu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman had established the Muktijoddha Kalyan Trust after the independence for ensuring welfare of the distressed family members of the freedom fighters and the wounded freedom fighters.
She alleged that the successive governments after the assassination of the father of the nation on August 15, 1975 had brought the profitable institutions under the trust to the verge of destruction.
She also listed some measures of her government for the development of the Muktijoddha Kalyan Trust, including recovery of land worth Tk 70 crore in Narayanganj after long 40 years; making the land of its five subsidiary organisations suitable after selling the inoperative machineries of those through auction; clearing the arrear dues of its officials and employees; and updating the record of lands owned by the Trust after clearing the arrear taxes.
The prime minister said the Trust has taken an initiative to set up a warehouse in Chittagong from its own fund where it is expected to get an annual income of Tk 1 crore.
Besides, she said, if the four projects already undertaken are implemented as per the rescue package, it will be possible to increase the capital of the Trust to Tk 300 crore by 2014.
A 2,915-unit housing project is being implemented for the landless and distressed freedom fighters involving Tk 228 crore while 25,816 families of freedom fighters have been brought under the rationing programme, she said.