WAR CRIMES TRIAL
Witness said he had planned to kill SQC in 1971Staff Correspondent
Freedom fighter Sirajul Islam, known to his friends as Siru Bangali, told the International Crimes Tribunal-1 on Tuesday that he had planned to kill the detained lawmaker Salauddin Quader Chowdhury in 1971.
On the second day’s cross-examination by defence counsel Ahsanul Haq Hena, the third prosecution witness in the case against Salauddin said he wanted to kill Salauddin, Syed Wahidul Alam and Mir Kashem Ali during the war of independence.
Siru said his plan to kill Mir Kashem Ali failed as could not reach the city for the operation.
Siru Bangali also said that though he had ambushed he failed to kill Salauddin and his associate Syed Wahidul Alam on June 14, 1971 as they had passed through road before he could be there.
Replying to defence query, the freedom fighter admitted that he had charged grenade at the house of Fazlul Kabir Chowdhury, elder brother of Salauddin’s father Fazlul Quader Chowdhury.
He said that he knows that Fazlul Kabir Chowdhury was the father of ruling Awami League lawmaker Fazle Karim Chowdhury.
He said freedom fighters killed Salauddin’s associate Hamidul Kabir Chowdhury immediately after Bangladesh was liberated from the occupation army.
The freedom fighter also admitted that he was arrested by Indian Army at Dakkhin Ashia Primary School on December 23, 1971.
He admitted that Mukti Bahini commander captain Karim had asked him to do something and he refused to do so saying that it was a personal matter and nothing related to independence.
Siru Bangali, however, denied a defence suggestion that Karim had asked him to settle a personal matter over Ratna Bishwas and the second prosecution witness Salim Ullah.
Refuting another defence suggestion, the freedom fighter asserted that a very high frequency wireless station was there at Fauzdarhat in Chittagong since the Pakistan era.
He said the wireless message of the country’s founding president Sheikh Mujubur Rahman proclaiming the country’s independence might have been in English, but a copy of the message they had received was in Bangala.
The cross-examination remained incomplete when the tribunal of Justice Nizamul Huq, Justice Anwarul Haque and judge AKM Zahir Ahmed adjourned the proceedings until this morning.
Salauddin was a student in 1971.
In 1980s, he was a Jatiya Party leader, lawmaker and minister.
After leaving Ershad’s Jatiya Party, Salauddin founded National Democratic Party.
In 1991, Salauddin was elected to parliament as the NDP chief.
From 1991 to 1996, Salauddin was in the Awami League-led movement against the then BNP government for the introduction of the system of non-party caretaker government for holding elections acceptable to all.
Subsequently, Salauddin joined BNP and elected to parliament a number of times on its ticket.
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