RANGPUR People of Rangpur region today lauded the
verdict upholding death sentence against assistant secretary general of
Jamaat-e-Islami ATM Azharul Islam on charges of crimes against humanity
committed in Rangpur during the War of Liberation in 1971.
The Appellate Division of Supreme Court today upheld death penalty of
Azhar, infamously known as 'Koshai Azhar', rejecting the appeal filed by him
against verdict of the International Crimes Tribunal (ICT)-1 delivered on
December 30 in 2014.
The ICT-1 found Azhar of Batasan Lohanipara area in Badarganj upazila of
Rangpur district guilty in five of the total six charges it had framed
The ICT-1 awarded Azhar with capital punishment for gunning down 15
unarmed innocent civilians in Rangpur city on April 16, massacre of over
1,200 unarmed civilians at Jharuarbeel in Badarganj upazila on April 17 and
abduction and murder of four teachers of Rangpur Carmichael College and
others on April 30 in 1971.
Besides, the ICT-1 sentenced Azhar to total of 30 years of imprisonment
for raping women after confining them at Rangpur Town Hall and torturing
Shawkat Hossain and Rafiqul Hassan during the War of Liberation in 1971.
Later, Azhar filed an appeal against his conviction on January 28 in 2015.
During the War of Liberation, Azhar was an intermediate student of Rangpur
Carmichael College and was also the commander of Rangpur unit of Al-badr, a
heinous auxiliary force to the Pakistani occupation forces.
While expressing instant reactions, people of Rangpur region lauded
verdict of the Appellate Division against Azhar and demanded for its
Former Commander of Rangpur district unit command of Bangladesh
Muktijoddha Sangsad (BMS) Mosaddek Hossain Bablu termed the verdict upholding
capital punishment of Azhar as reflection of aspirations of people.
Former Badarganj upazila unit Commander of BMS Aiyub Ali Sarker, former
Kurigram district unit Commander of BMS Sirajul Islam Tuku and former Syedpur
unit Commander of BMS in Nilphamari Ekramul Haque welcomed the verdict.
The freedom fighters said the verdict of the Appellate Division has
fulfilled aspirations of the nation through ensuring justice against the
crimes committed against humanity by Azhar.
With this verdict, the crimes committed against humanity by Azhar in
Rangpur have been proved beyond any doubt. I want to see its execution to
prove that no war criminal, razakar al-badrs or al-shams would go spared,
Ekramul Haque added.
Congratulating the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court, ICT-1 and the
prosecution, Chilmari upazila Chairman Shawkat Ali Sarker, Bir Bikram, said
the final verdict against Azhar has fulfilled expectations of the Bangalees.
Azhar had close association with the Pakistani occupation forces,
committed crimes against humanity and he has to walk down the gallows as the
Appellate Division today turned down his appeal against the death sentence
delivered by the ICT-1, Sarker said.
Acting President of Rangpur district Awami League (AL) Mamtaz Uddin Ahmed,
it's General Secretary Advocate Rezaul Karim Raju, city AL President Shafiur
Rahman Shafi also expressed satisfaction over the verdict against Azhar.
President of Rangpur district unit of Ghatok Dalal Nirmul Committee Dr.
Mofizul Islam Mantu and its General Secretary Moazzem Hossain Lablu and JASOD
leader Gautam Roy welcomed the verdict against Jamaat leader Azhar.
Similarly, local leaders of Bangladesh Chhatra League, Workers Party,
Chhatra Moitri, Communist Party of Bangladesh, Bangladesher Samajtantrik Dal,
Ganatantry Party, Sommilito Sangskritik Jyote, Prajanmo Ekattor, Udichhi
Shilpi Gosthi and other organisations have expressed satisfaction over the
verdict against Azhar.
Lauding the verdict against Azhar, rickshaw-puller Keramat Ali, teacher
Aminul Islam, housewife Nazmun Nahar, student Shafik and farmer Ariful Haque
thanked Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for initiating the war crimes trial.
They urged the pro-liberation forces to remain alert with spirit of the
War of Liberation and demanded for execution of the verdict against Azhar and
completion of war crimes trial to free the country from the stigma
Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)