Court unhappy for failure to produce witnesses
The International Crimes Tribunal-1 yesterday expressed discontent over the prosecution and defence's repeated requests for adjournment of proceedings when they fail to produce witnesses.
“This is the last request, warning or caution whatever you think…from now on the tribunal won't adjourn proceedings on this ground,” tribunal Chairman Justice Md Nizamul Huq told the lawyers.
On September 9, the tribunal issued an order saying it would not adjourn proceedings on such ground. The order came after the defence of war crimes accused Jamaat-e-Islami leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee failed to produce the witness and sought the proceedings' adjournment on that day.
Yesterday both the prosecution and the defence again failed to produce witnesses in two separate cases--one against Sayedee and the other against former Jamaat chief Ghulam Azam, and the court had to adjourn the proceedings one hour before the lunch break.
“Mr Prosecutor, we are not happy,” Nizamul Huq told Zead Al Malum, prosecutor of the case against Ghulam Azam.
The tribunal could issue warrants to bring the witnesses but it would be an excess, he said, asking the counsellors to keep at least two witnesses ready. “One will be present in courtroom, and the other will stay outside.”
Meanwhile, the exhibition of reports of different newspapers of 1971 and 1972 at the tribunal was completed yesterday, and the defence cross-examined the seizure list witness Azab Uddin Mia, assistant librarian of Bangla Academy. A total of 435 clippings of Bangla dailies Sangram and Azad and English daily The Observer, among others, were submitted to the tribunal.
Proceedings of the two cases were adjourned until Sunday.