Alim held as collaborator after war
The prosecution in its opening statement in the case against BNP leader Abdul Alim at International Crimes Tribunal-2 said a state probe launched just after the liberation proved Alim's anti-liberation role during the war.
It said he had even been detained under the Collaborators Act, 1972.
About a month after the tribunal had framed 17 specific war crimes charges against the former minister, the prosecution yesterday placed its opening statement.
Prosecutors Rana Dasgupta and AKM Saiful Islam read out the 42-page opening statement yesterday. The statement largely narrated the historical background of the war and Alim's role in it.
Following a time petition of the defence, the three-member tribunal led by Justice ATM Fazle Kabir yesterday deferred the date for recording the depositions of prosecution witnesses until August 6.
On June 11, the tribunal framed 17 charges against the former BNP lawmaker for his alleged involvement in genocide and murder of Bangalee civilians during the Liberation War and fixed yesterday for hearing the opening statement of the prosecution and examination of prosecution witnesses and submissions of defence documents.
However, the defence was directed to submit its documents on August 6.
Rana Dasgupta said the government issued proclamation against Alim under the Collaborators Act, 1972, and arrested him in March 1972. Allegations about his anti-liberation role were proved through a government investigation, added the prosecutor.
Even documents from the defence say that in March 1972, Alim was arrested for allegedly being a collaborator of the Pakistani forces and he was released on bail in 1974.
Prosecutor Saiful Islam said Alim led the formation of the Peace Committee and Razakars (two auxiliary forces of the Pakistan army) in Joypurhat during the war and recruited Razakars by setting up a recruiting centre in his own home.
Later, he established the office of the Peace Committee and a camp of the Razakars occupying the home and businesses of his neighbour Shawn Lal Bazla. He committed crimes such as killing, genocide and looting with the help of the Pakistani army and other collaborators during the war, said Saiful.
Meanwhile, in the war crimes case against Jamaat leader Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed, the tribunal yesterday fixed July 15 to deliver an order on an indictment review petition filed by the defence.
On June 21, the tribunal indicted Mojaheed on seven charges, including murder, torture and genocide and hatching a conspiracy to kill intellectuals during the Liberation War. On July 1, the defence filed the petition seeking a review of the indictment order.
Abdur Razzaq, chief defence counsel of the detained Jamaat leaders, yesterday said although the prosecution had not mentioned Mojaheed as a leader of the Al-Badr force in all charges, the tribunal mentioned the accused as “head of Al-Badr Bahini” in every charge.
So, the order should be reviewed. Otherwise the accused would be prejudiced against, said Razzaq.
Justice ATM Fazle Kabir said Mojaheed was identified as a leader of Islami Chhatra Sangha, then student wing of Jamaat, and head of the Al-Badr force from October, 1971, in his life sketch placed in the formal charges.
The tribunal took the information from there, Justice Kabir said.
Prosecutor Mukhlesur Rahman Badal said the tribunal had framed the charges properly considering the formal charges, witness statements and other documents.
Tribunal-2 yesterday completed recording the cross-examination of the first prosecution witness against another war crimes accused and Jamaat leader Abdul Quader Mollah.
It fixed today for recording the testimony of the second prosecution witness.
Earlier on the day, Ekramul Huqe, defence counsel of Quader Mollah, cross-examined Mozaffar Ahmed Khan and asked him at least 26 questions. Mozaffar had given his testimony on July 3.