Monday, September 23, 2013

Nannu Leaks: This ain't just any #ICTScandal (with full video evidence) !!!

Various channels to date have broadcast the interview of Mr. Nannu, a prosecution witness in the case against Ameer-e-Jamaat Mawlana Motiur Rahman Nizami, where a worried Nannu (clearly under pressure from the present government led by Sheikh Hasina) came in front of the media to claim that he is not the same Nannu who was filmed in the secret video exposing the farcical nature of the War crimes trials.

The secret video in question has come to the limelight after the British Daily Telegraph published news of another scandal of immense proportions regarding the mechanisms of the International Crimes Tribunal in Bangladesh, when it said, “ Mr Cadman cited a secretly filmed meeting between a defence figure and a key witness in the war crimes trial of another Jamaat leader in which the witness said he was being forced by government threats and financial inducements to give evidence.

In the film, the witness, known as 'Nannu' said he and his family had been threatened and that he had been offered a large interest free loan to be a witness against Motiur Rahman Nizami, another top Jamaat leader, accused of committing atrocities. "I've seen this video and it's deeply disturbing. It brings the whole process into question. If this witness has been pursued and coerced by the government, there has to be an international, independent inquiry into this whole process," said Mr Cadman.”

Realizing the enormity of what had transpired, the government authorities hastily arranged for a press conference making fazed Nannu almost seem like he was lying through his teeth. His conviction was unnatural as he adamantly tried to assert that he was not the same Nannu as in the leaked video.  But is this the truth? Natunbarta reports Nannu as saying,

“From newspaper sources, I have come to know that some people have a video of an interview I was supposed to have given. After that, I saw the video on youtube. The man shown in the video does not have a moustache. I have long curly hair from my childhood. But the man in the video does not have long curly hair. Also, the voice of the man in the video is not mine. This voice in the video is a distorted voice of mine. Moreover, the statement given is also not mine”

It is true that Nannu attended the news conference donning a moustache. This is how he looked at the presser. 

And this is the picture of the Nannu in the secretly recorded video.

Yes, it is true that the Nannu in the secretly filmed video does not have a moustache. But a picture from his voter ID also does not don a moustache. See this picture below,

Also the fact remains that when the trial of Mawlana Nizami began, the same Nannu was on the field with the prosecution team in his role as an important prosecution witness. He was without a moustache then too. See his picture below. 

So did he have a moustache then? Does the picture above a moustache? You do not believe the above picture to be of the real Nannu when he was interviewed? Hmmm, we have just the right thing for you.

See the full video from which the above picture was taken as a screenshot (post with resumable download link).

So is it not proved now that Nannu did not have a moustache then?

Let us point out a couple of inconsistencies which prove that Nannu was a trained witness used with the intent to bring forward false cases and accusations against Jamaat leader Mawlana Nizami,

a. In the above video, Nannu tells the prosecutor that Nizami was an activist of the Chatro Songstha. Such a group never existed. It should have been Chatro Songho.

b. Whenever journalists come forward to ask questions, police create a ruckus and start shoving and pushing everybody forward, informing that no more questions may be asked. Such moves are great if your witness is a false trained one. You obviously wouldn’t want him blurting out any inconsistent and made up data.
There is no need to expound much on the matter. Suffice to say that one does not need much more to prove that Nannu is a false witness.

Let me just add that if you check the secretly filmed video and the video of Nannu with the prosecution team, you shall be treated to the fact that Nannu is wearing the same tie on both occasions. Coincidence can only go so far. Don’t you think????

Let us peruse another video where it becomes clear that the Nannu in secret video and the one in the press conference is the one and the same person.

Now carefully listen to the voice of the video from the conference and the secret video, at the beginning and latter parts respectively. Sound similar? Yes, we thought so too. They are the one and the same person. Full stop.

So what will the tribunal say now? To rephrase that more authoritatively, what will the government say now? Sure, the trial of war criminals had to go on. But was the situation so bad that they had to manufacture testimony and tailor witnesses on a case to case basis, even coerce them to falsely testify? We all know of the atrocities committed upon humanity in the war of 1971. The video evidence of killing and rape cannot be ignored. Although many known collaborators are still alive, of whom more than 37000 were listed after 1971 under the Collaborators Act, the government has seen it fit to generalize the entire Jamaat leadership (none of whom were in that list) as ‘THE’ collaborators. All was well and fine, until they came to the evidence part. They had none.

This scandal is nothing out of the blue. It is in line with a steady flow of misappropriations the nation has been witnessing from the tribunal since its inception. Apart from repeatedly biased rulings against the defendants, the tribunal has been subject to controversy due to its silence on the abduction drama of prosecution turned defence witness, Shukhoranjan Bali and the implication of its top officials in the Economist exposed Skypegate scandal. In effect, the tribunal has lost its acceptability. It is not an instrument for reconciliation any more. It has turned into a government controlled vendetta churning machine.

See the full explicit video of Nannu spilling the beans on the farcical nature of the war crimes trials (post with resumable download link) .

This is not just the case with Nannu, as other witnesses have come forward as well, informing the media that they had been forced to give false testimony against veteran politician Mawlana Nizami who is standing trial.

This is the original Skype scandal. Don’t forget to see this beauty!

And why should you forget to peruse the curious case of the Shukhoranjan Bali abduction and his REAL testimony!

See this link for a very good Bangla version of this article. 

And the Almighty knows best.

Abdul Quader Mollah sends message to the nation

When family members visited Abdul Kader Mollah after the Supreme Court handed down its verdict of a death sentence, he sent through them a message for the people of this nation. God forbidding, it may be destined to be his last message to this Ummah.

“I have not done anything wrong. Allah the Almighty knows best.

I have turned into a target just because of my involvement with Islam and the Islamic movement. All the accusations brought forward against me are false and politically motivated.

The prosecution could not bring one eye witness to testify against me at the International Crimes Tribunal yet it sentenced me to life imprisonment completely based on hearsay witnesses.

The Gonojagoron platform at Shahbag was created and sustained with the assistance of the government after a life imprisonment sentence was given by the court in the false cases filed against me. In response to the demands of that government controlled platform, the law was amended during the duration of my trial in order to allow the prosecution to appeal for a stronger sentence against me.

It was an unprecedented move in the history of the judiciary when the Supreme Court of Bangladesh actually increased my punishment from the life imprisonment granted against the false cases filed against me in lower courts and changed it to the death sentence.

Giving the penultimate sentence based on absolutely hearsay evidence is an unheard of and an unprecedented event in the history of the judiciary throughout the globe. Though this verdict is inexplicably cruel, it has not saddened me. That is because I am target to this conspiracy solely due to my involvement with Islam and the Islamic movement.

Throughout history, it was observed that whoever stood up for Islam and the Islamic movement have been forced to suffer through conspiracies which plotted their downfall. This was simply due to their very involvement with Islam and the Islamic movement, nothing else.

Even the prophets and the messengers of the Almighty were not exempt from such hardship. So the true Islamic movement is a bloody journey filled with hardship.

Allah the Almighty has closed the doors of Prophethood. However, he has kept the doors open for martyrdom. As long as as martyrdom continues in the path of the Islamic movement, it shall flourish.

Allah (S.W.T) only accepts whomever He wishes to be a martyr in His cause. If I get accepted by my Creator to be a Shaheed in His path, then this will be the greatest blessing of my life. Therefore, I am not afraid of the death sentence handed against me.

By framing me for completely baseless and false charges, this worldly court has only provided me with a certificate for receiving justice in the Court of the Hereafter.

The Quran reveals that the ‘Final Day of Judgment’ will be the Day wherein the Almighty shall establish justice through the abolishment of all unjust and false judgments.

Thus the real judgment will be decided at the Court of the Hereafter. Today’s injustice will be the reason for my freedom on that day. I shall surely get justice from the Almighty on that Day. 

I have not done any wrong. The Almighty keeps knowledge of all matters, public and private. There is none who will escape the vision of the Almighty. 

Those who want to kill me by accusing me of false accusations, Allah will do them justice on the Final Judgment Day. For Allah’s testament alone will be enough for me.

Even if it comes at the cost of my life, the people of this country shall one day be free. Allah’s Deen shall be established as the triumphant ideology and all manner of injustice shall stop. I pray to the Almighty for the victory of His Deen.

I send my Salaam to my fellow countrymen and ask them for their heartfelt duas. I urge my beloved countrymen to face this tough stage in the history of this nation with patience, endurance and restraint. 

To my dear countrymen, colleagues and loved ones; even if we do not meet again in this world, we shall meet again in the Hereafter insha’allah.”

Saturday, September 21, 2013

I Demand the Removal of the NIQAB BAN at BRAC University

On the 12th of September, students wearing niqab were banned from BRAC University, one of the topmost universities in Bangladesh. This was declared as being due to violation of the dress code issued by the university in question. BRAC University authorities imposed the ban by blocking the ID’s of the said students.

According to a disciplinary sanction issued by the university to a student of the university, the ‘niqab’ was seen as a violation of the dress code of the university. Below is the letter sent to the ‘defaulter’ student.

It is mentionable that BRAC University advises its students to comply with a dress code conforming to ‘its’ cultural and academic ethos and stipulates its students not to wear:

1. Face mask or hood of any kind that makes the individual unidentifiable
2. Shorts of any kind, including three quarters
3. Mini or midi skirts
4. Bathroom slippers (except for cleaning staff)
5. A dress item that contains offensive slogan, picture or sign

Moreover, university authorities claim that they do not bar any department/Institute/School from prescribing any dress or attire considered necessary for the execution of their academic programmes, in effect leaving space for compromise in special cases, one of which can and should be the ‘niqab’. So as we see, the university dress code circular itself has provisions for facilitating students who wish to conform to the niqab.

Ethos regarding a Niqab Ban:

It was but a few days ago that a niqab ban was overturned at Birmingham Metropolitan College, a large further education institution. The ban had come to light when a teenager tried to enrol for an A-level course, to be told she could not wear her niqab, because of security concerns. This decision, at a college where a large proportion of students are Asian, prompted a huge social media campaign, including a petition signed by 9,000 people, and plans for a demonstration. The college decided to reverse its decision before that protest took place, a move welcomed by Birmingham Ladywood Labour MP Shabana Mahmood, who said otherwise "a group of women ... would have potentially been excluded from education".  It is worth noting Muslims make up only around 4.8% of the UK population – and it has been estimated that only a tiny percentage of that population veils their face.

If such a mentality can prevail in a Muslim minority country, one expects a lot more from Muslim majority societies, a lot more. We need to remember that women who wear the veil are trying to observe their religious convictions. Since there is no state ruling by the government of Bangladesh to explicitly ban or impose the niqab on women, debating against it citing ‘oppression of the fairer sex’, especially in institutions of learning, is tantamount to making them feel that they are somehow imposing on the whole of society and that they are the biggest problem at the moment. And of course, that isn't conducive to integration, belonging and a positive atmosphere. Absurd steps by BRAC University such as banning students on the basis of wearing niqab in a Muslim majority country is more than bad publicity, its expounding a mentality of institutionalized Islamophobia.

A Sad State of Affairs:

When this issue was first raised by BRAC University, a group of students were extremely supportive towards the students who were subject to this episode of inexplicable institutionalized harassment due to them wearing the niqab. So, they started a campaign in protest. Almost 1100 students of BRAC supported the cause through signature campaigns. Sadly, their support was discouraged by BRAC University authorities. 

A more alarming feature of the problem is that the media has been relatively silent on the issue, unlike on potentially less hazardous matters like “Oishee repenting through prayers” or “Allama Shafi comparing women to tamarinds”. Few would be able to contest the fact that BRAC is among the most powerful institutions in Bangladesh, with the result that it has significant clout in all manner of circles, be that the media or the government. Indeed, the silence shown by leading media regarding a matter of such deep rooted social and religious magnitude is more than telling. It’s a blatant display of complicity.

What can be done NOW?

A thoughtful comment-cum-plea by the facebook page “Anti-Niqaab Protocol by BRAC University” is enough in this regard when it says, “What cause does Brac University have to feel so threatened that they would need to block niqaab-wearing students? Universities around the world [including universities in the West] have students who wear the niqaab. Is their security not threatened? Airports around the world have security issues to be worried about more than BRAC University. Have any of you ever heard or seen that the travelers or passengers have been asked to take of their niqaab? There is a private room with female security guards to check the identity. How hard is that we ask?” 

Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states, “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.”

The heartfelt comment of the aggrieved student should be a wake-up call enough for BRAC authorities, “BRAC works to enhance Human rights and empower women. Is this how they want to empower ME? By unveiling me? Funny concept of empowerment, Don't you think?”

We demand an immediate end to this masqueraded fiasco churned by BRAC to suppress religious freedom and values. We demand BRAC to behave responsibly and remove this absolutely absurd niqab ban immediately in order to allow our niqab wearing sisters to attend the university without any further hindrance and harrassment. 

And the Almighty knows best.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

How uncorroborated evidence was used to sentence Abdul Quader Mollah

Defying logic and all manner of common sense, the appellate division of the Supreme Court on Wednesday sentenced Abdul Quader Molla, a senior member of the biggest Islamic party in the country, the Jamaat-e-Islami, to death for committing crimes against humanity during the nation's 1971 independence war against Pakistan. It dismissed appeals made by Quader Molla's lawyers against his conviction on five counts of crimes against humanity while focusing on the appeal of the prosecution for a death sentence. Instead the court upheld unanimously that his acquittal on charge no 4 should be reversed and should stand as a conviction, and most significantly that, by a majority, the sentence on charge no 6 (the murder of a family), should be changed from life imprisonment to a death penalty.

So what is this infamous Charge no. 6 that was powerful enough to convince judges to award Abdul Kader Mollah a death penalty? Let us analyse using an excellent post compiled by David Bergman.

Charge No. 6 in brief:
As an extract summary from the original judgement reads, “During the period of War of Liberation , on 26.3.1971 at about 06:00 pm the accused Abdul Quader Molla one of leaders of Islami Chatra Sangha and as well as prominent member of Al-Badar or member of group of individuals being accompanied by some biharis and Pakistani army went to the house of Hajrat Ali at 21, Kalapani Lane No. 5 at Mirpur Section-12 and entering inside the house forcibly, with intent to kill Bangalee civilians, his accomplices under his leadership and on his order killed Hazrat Ali by gun fire, his wife Amina was gunned down and then slaughtered to death, their two minor daughters named Khatija and Tahmina were also slaughtered to death, their son Babu aged 02 years was also killed by dashing him to the ground violently. During the same transaction of the attack 12 accomplices of the accused committed gang rape upon a minor Amela aged 11 years but another minor daughter Momena who remained into hiding, on seeing the atrocious acts, eventually escaped herself from the clutches of the perpetrators.” 

Unnatural conviction of judges on integrity of witness and her account:
1. The defence had every right to ask whether Momena Begum was who she claimed to be. It argued from their end that P.W.3 Momena Begum was not the daughter of victim Hazrat Ali Laskar. The blind conviction of the judges to prove otherwise was evident in the following, “Without any evidence or putting suggestion to P.W.3 on the basis of any tangible evidence no such argument stands lawful and correct. Besides, on cross-examination, in reply to question put to her, P.W.3 stated that her father was running a tailoring shop at Mirpur 01 in front of Majar and she also used to work there prior to her marriage.” The simple question would be to ask about how were the judges so sure that just because the witness stated so, her testimony was correct? Wouldn't any fair minded judge ask for a corroboration of such narration?

2.     About the authenticity of her narration, the judgement says, “At the time of incident she was a girl of 13 years of age. One can say that how she can memorize the incident long 41 years after the incident took place? It is true that with the passage of time human memory becomes faded. But it is also the reality that human memory is quite capable of reserving some significant moment or incident in the hard disc of his or her memory which is considered as long term memory (LTM) and it is never erased from human memory.” I am forced to break bad here as I ask about what kind of bullshit logic is this? If it is true that human memory fades with age, then how is it true that the same human memory remembers Abdul Qader Mollah simply because a Bengali speaking fellow was wearing a Panjabi over his pajamas, that too 42 years ago!!! That could’ve even been President Abdul Hamid for God’s sake!!! 

Is this Abdul Kader Mollah in a panjabi? The prosecution witness was not sure.

3.     The judgement itself does not claim to have any hardcore evidence of Abdul Qader Mollah’s involvement other than an ‘emotional’ uncorroborated testimony. In order to cover all avenues of involvement and desperately prove his involvement, the judges use this logic defying logic, “It has been held by the Appeal Chamber of ICTY, in the case of Kristic that – “A defendant may be convicted for having aided and abetted a crime which requires specific intent even where the principal perpetrators have not been tried or identified ( April 19, 2004 para 143 of the judgement) .” My simple question would be: Where is this logic when murder cases with reliable witnesses are withdrawn just because the accused are from the Awami League? From when has it become suddenly so mainstream in the case of Jamaat leaders?

The killer of this child goes by the name of Saiful Alam Limon and he was released in a month under bail because he was a high ranking Chatra League cadre

Natural conviction of the defence team on the lack of witness integrity:

An extract from the defence’s closing arguments suffice to this end. The Defence calls into question the reliability of PW 3’s testimony. At the time of the alleged offence, PW 3 was a young child, clearly traumatised by the events she witnesses including the killing of her entire family and rape of her sister. This culminated in a period of insanity for three years (“I was insane for three years after…they tied me by chain”, (PW 3, Cross examination 17 July 2012). Although she admitted to being in hiding during the commission of offence, she provided a number of detailed points as abovementioned. However, PW 3 was unable to state how she was able to see or indeed recall who was present in the house at the time or furthermore, how she knew that the Accused was present. She did not describe the Accused at the time or state that she knew him prior to the offence so as to be able to recognize him. She was further unable to describe the role of the Accused in the alleged incidents. She did not state whether the Accused ordered the killings or rape, aided and abetted in the killings or rape or indeed directly perpetrated the killings. Instead she continuously referred to the generic “they” to describe the alleged perpetrators without elaborating as to whom this included. 

It is submitted that PW 3 was unable to identify the Accused as his alleged presence at the commission of offence is entirely based upon hearsay. In examination in chief, PW 3 testified “Kamal Khan who served tea to the freedom fighters told me that Quader Molla killed my parents. My father in law, Akkas Molla also told me the same” (PW 3, Examination in chief, 17 July 2012.) PW 3 thereby admitted that she did not know at the time who committed the offences and was only told at a subsequent date. This is in direct contradiction to her examination in chief wherein she sought to assert that she recognized the Accused at the time. This amounts to no more than hearsay evidence to which the relevant considerations must apply as detailed above. 

The Defence further highlights that following her recovery, PW 3 admittedly never reported the atrocities that she witnesses or named the Accused as bearing any criminal responsibility. Given the circumstances in which PW 3 would have witnessed the commission of offences and that she admittedly was told of the Accused’s alleged involvement after the fact, and in light of no further supporting evidence, it is submitted that the Prosecution has failed to prove the Accused’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Concerns of a lawyer:
Here are the concerns of Shishir Mohammad Manir, lawyer and public figure.

“Due to professional responsibility I have perused all evidences on record and come to the following conclusions regarding charge 6 (Hazrat Ali Killing):

1. Only one witness Momena begum deposed before the Tribunal. It is extremely unsafe to award death sentence on the basis of single witness. Hono'ble Appellate Division has committed error of law and hence the sentence is liable to be set aside.

2. Momena Begum's gave statement to the Munktijoddha Jadughor, Mirpur (Jalladkhana) and descried same incidence to them but she didn't implicate Quader Molla and hence her statement given before the Tribunal is false and fabricated. We submitted her early recorded statement before the Appellate Division but the Hon'ble AD has failed to consider those documents and committed serious error of law and hence the conviction is liable to be set aside.

3. Before coming to the court her statement was recorded by the investigation officer but in that statement she also didn't implicate Quader Molla with the offense and hence the AD has failed to appreciate the contradiction between her statement made before the tribunal and the statement recorded by the IO.

4. it is for the first time Momena Begum, the daughter of Hazrat Ali, implicated AQM with the crime after coming to the Tribunal. It is validly inferred that she has been seriously tutored by the prosecution and hence she is unbelievable and unreliable.

5. It was also recorded in her earlier statement that she went to her husband's residence two days before the incidence. Therefore it was impossible for her to see the incidence and hence her statement is completely unreliable.

6. In these circumstances, I am of the view that the sentence awarded by the AD is liable to be set aside. 

The final nail in the coffin of justice:

Amnesty’s concern regarding this unusual sentence was telling. “We are very concerned about the Supreme Court’s ruling and the apparent relentless effort by the government to ensure that Mollah could be put to death. We urge Bangladeshi authorities to commute his death sentence, and to impose a moratorium on executions as a first step towards abolishing the death penalty,” said Abbas Faiz, Amnesty International’s Bangladesh Researcher. 

The death sentence was handed down by the highest court in the country, giving Mollah no chance to appeal. The imposition of the death sentence without the possibility of appeal is incompatible with Bangladesh’s obligations under international human rights law. 

“Imposing a death sentence without the right of judicial appeal defies human rights law. There is no question that the victims of Bangladesh’s independence war deserve justice, but one human rights violation does not cancel out another. Executions are a symptom of a culture of violence rather than a solution to it,” said Faiz. 

“This is the first known case of a prisoner sentenced to death directly by the highest court in Bangladesh. It is also the first known death sentence in Bangladesh with no right of appeal.” 

We demand an end to this travesty of justice. We demand to #FreeKaderMollah

Monday, September 16, 2013

Biography of Abdul Kader Mollah

Renowned for his social activities, Abdul Kader Mollah is a well known leader. He is presently an Assistant Secretary General of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami. He was born in 1948 at Joripardongi village in Sadarpur thana of Faridpur to a respectable religious family. He started his study life at the Joripardongi Government Primary School. A meritorious student from the beginning, he was a recipient of both Primary (1959) and Secondary (1961) study scholarships. In 1964, he passed his secondary studies from Amirabad Fazlul Haq Institute securing first class. 

After that he got enrolled at Rajendra College in Faridpur and in 1966, passed his higher secondary studies with distinction. He passed his BSc from the same college in 1968. In the face of deep financial crisis, he abandoned his studies for a while and began a career as a teacher at the college. In 1970, he enrolled in the physics department of Dhaka University. He was unable to give his masters final examination in that department in 1971 due to the war of Liberation. In 1975, he broke all previous records when he stood first in first class at the Diploma in Social Studies Education Administration. Afterwards in 1977, he gained his masters degree in Education Administration where he again secured first place gaining first division. Continuing upon his involvement with teaching, he joined as a part time teacher at Udayan Secondary School, an establishment situated at the heart of Dhaka University, in the same year.

After the results of his M.Ed got published, he joined Bangladesh Rifles Public school and College as a senior teacher. Later, he discharged his duties as the Acting Principal of the college. From there on, he joined Islami Foundation Bangladesh as a Cultural Officer. In 1978, he joined Bangladesh Islami Centre as a Research Scholar. Till 1979, he was the Founding Secretary of Manarat International School and College. In 1981, Abdul Kader Mollah joined the veteran newspaper, the Daily Sangram as the executive editor, starting his career in journalism.

Abdul Kader Mollah is also known for his decorated political career. While studying in class 8, he was drawn towards the concept of Communism. As a result, he joined Chatra Union, the student wing of the Communist Party. He was with the Chatra Union till 1966. After his higher secondary examination, he got acquainted with one of the most illustrious Tafseer series of the 20th century, the Tafhimul Quran, written by Maulana Maududi. He began reading and studying the series with enthusiasm.
Deeply moved by the literature of Maulana Maududi, he was strongly attracted towards Islam. This resulted in him joining the erstwhile Islamic student movement, the East Pakistan wing of the Islami Chatro Songho, in 1966. He became a “shodossho” (member) of the organization. He served the organization in various important capacities. He was the President of the Shahidullah Hall unit of Chatro Songho at Dhaka University. Later, he was elected the President of the Dhaka University Unit of the Chatro Songho. Afterwards, he became the Dhaka City Secretary of the organization. At the same time, he was also a member of the Central Executive Committee of the organization. 

After the end of his student life in 1977, he joined Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh in his journey to become part of the wider Islamic movement. He took oath as a ‘Rokon’ (senior member) of the organization in 1978 in the month of November. In the aftermath of this promotion, he was given the role of personal secretary to Professor Gholam Azam, the incumbent Ameer of Jamaat. He was also elected as a member of the Shura Council and Executive Council of Dhaka City Jamaat. In a short time, he was also elected as a member of the central Majlis-e-Shura Council of Jamaat. In 1982 he was bestowed with the position of Secretary of Dhaka City Jamaat. After that he also carried out his duties in his position as Naib-e-Ameer of Jamaat Dhaka City. 

In 1985, he was elected the Ameer of Jamaat Dhaka City and became a member of the Central Executive Committee. In 1991, he was made the Central Publicity Secretary of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami. In 2000, he was made an Assistant Secretary General of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami. Alongside, he was also an important member of the liaison committee of the 4 party Alliance setup to facilitate the movement against the excesses and malpractices of the Awami League government. 

Abdul Kader Mollah was imprisoned at least four times before his present ordeal. He was first arrested in 1964 for his role in being part of the movement against the oppressive Ayub regime. He was again arrested in 1972 without any reason. However, he was released from the custody of the local police station in the face of a public outcry over his arrest. He was again arrested during Ershad’s rule for his important role in organizing the movement against the dictatorship. He was set free after 4 months after a high court ruling that declared his arrest illegitimate. He was also arrested by the then BNP government in lieu of his involvement in the movement to push forward for the caretaker government in February 1996. 

Abdul Kader Mollah also has had a lot of contributions as a social benefactor. He was twice elected as the President of the Dhaka Union of Journalists in 1982 and 1983. 

He is actively involved of various social and educational institutions. Among them Badshah Faisal Institute, Islamic Foundation Society and its School Managing Committee, Sadarpur Madrassah and Orphanage, Faridpur District Hajidangi Khademul Islam Madrassah and Orphanage, Sayyid Abul Alaa Maududi Academy are mentionable. He is a serving adviser to all these institutions. Other than that he served as the Secretary of Badshah Faisal Institute and its Trust for a consecutive three times. He was the founding secretary of Manarat International School and College. 

Abdul Kader Mollah is a celebrated columnist who has widely written articles and columns on an array of national and international issues. He was also a prolific writer on various issues in Islam. His well thought out articles and views have been published in various dailies, weeklies, monthlies and magazines. Apart from his literary prowess, he has also travelled to various countries including Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Japan, Singapore, Pakistan and India.

Abdul Kader Mollah got married to Sanowar Jahan on the 8th of October 1977. Their family has been blessed with 2 sons and 4 daughters, all of whom are studying at various renowned educational institutions and involved with the Islamic movement. Begum Saowar Jahan is a “Rokon” of Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami.

Abdul Kader Mollah: Questions that will haunt your free mind

Abdul Kader Mollah’s appeal verdict will be given any day by the ICT. Few expect anything out of line from the judges, all of whom have been installed with the explicit blessing of the Awami League government, their political affiliation being of paramount importance. So let us recap back to the questions that will always cast into doubt the trial processes and haunt the free minds forever.

More than 40 years have passed since heinous crimes were committed during the War of Independence of Bangladesh. The memories were fresh then and the perpetrators widely known to many. If Jamaat leader Abdul Kader Mollah was allegedly involved in murder and other heinous war crimes more than 40 years ago, then how on earth …..

1. How was he able to continue his studies from late 1972 onwards as a fully fledged resident student of Dhaka University Shahidullah Residence Hall?

2. How was he able to teach from 1974-1975 at Udayan High School, situated at the heart of Dhaka University between Salimullah Muslim Hall and Jagannath Hall?

3. How was he able to discharge his duties as a senior teacher and acting Principal of Bangladesh Rifles College in 1977? This was at a time when his party, Jamaat-e-Islami was far from being in power; it was banned!

4. If he was truly a well known and publicly marked war criminal, then how on earth did he get elected twice in 1982 and 1983 as the vice president of the revered journalist union body, the Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ)? If the progressive journalists who waste column after column today in trying to validate allegations of heinous nature against Abdul Kader Mollah knew him as a war criminal and butcher from more than 40 years ago, why did they vote for him back then?

5. Cases against 37,000 accused were filed under the Collaborators Act. Why was there NOT EVEN ONE General Diary (GD) filed against him then???  

Questions that will haunt the conscience of your free mind………

Call with us. Stand with us. Call to free #FreeAbdulKaderMollah

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Inu Egging is an act of Democracy

One has heard of the phrase “making a mountain out of a molehill”. Many have tried to modify it in their own various ways and forms to reflect any resultant complexities that might arise while trying to apply the above. In this connection however, Hasanul Haque Inu, the incumbent Minister for (mis)Information of Bangladesh has stood out once again, that too after being egged while attending a talk show in London.

How dangerous is that, one may ask? Blogger fugstar is ready with the answer with a wonderful blog post, “In the context of UK politics egging is pretty main stream, John Prescott attracts a lot of it, Peter Mandelson got green custard and Fathers4Justice made a purple powder stunt occur in the House of Commons.”

The dramatic nature of his shameless arrogance stood out as he expounded on his inherent mindset on being victimized. Driving on that crazy notion that he stands to be the centre of that little personal space he labels universe, Hasanul Haque Inu spoke in the only uncouth language he knew when he said, “I believe Jamaat, Tetul Hujur (Hefazat leader Ahmed Shafi) and their friend BNP were behind the attack.” Fugstar pointed out that in a recently videotaped talk show, the dishonourable Minister for (mis)Information was at his very best, terming it "an attack on Bangladesh's Democracy (4:45)".

The above is Inu holding tight to a female official at the place of the egging. It shall suffice to say that a dog’s tail can never be straightened. This is not to make Inu small in character or stature, but to showcase the hypocrisy within those words.

The same Inu:
Yes, this is the same Inu who in his stance behind the skirts of democracy, stands accused of some the most repressive actions against the media in recent years. In addition to an already bulging list of closed newspapers and TV stations, the latest in the censorship of the media in Bangladesh includes government duct tape on popular blog portals such as bdtoday, which has issued a statement that details how the government has unlawfully blocked the site in Bangladesh through throttling traffic to and from the website through the private and public internet gateways.

Saying more will not prove that Inu is a badder person than he already is. It is just wasting time.

Joy Baba blessings:
In a blitzkrieg of a move, Sajeeb Wazed Joy, newly instated Johnny Bravo of the nation, had this to say on his facebook page,

Yesterday BNP-Jamaat cadres tried to physically attack our Information Minister………blah….blah………. Please vote against the BNP to keep such terrorists out of our country. 

In effect, Joy had established facts already. One was that BNP-Jamaat was “behind the attack” and that it was of a most heinous nature since it was carried out by “terrorists”. If that is the way to describe an egging, what words would one use for police firing live bullets on protesters? Apparently much less, as the same Sajeeb Wazed Joy blamed the Hefazat for standing in the line of police guns and getting in the way of bullets, saying that the death casualty was minimal, as only “6 lives were lost”. Mentionable is the fact that Joy has to date not uttered a word on the unjust verdict of Felani as well. Absurd as that sounds, it may have been because she was not an Awami League member.

I stand amazed at the hypocrisy. You should too.

If shooting innocent protesters and haplessly arresting human rights defenders who report them is democratic, then “these young people who egged Inu probably performed the most democratic act Bangladesh has seen for a while”. When people's mouths get closed by force, its only natural then the hands are bound to react. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Shaykh Bdnews and the fatwa boogeyman

"Now Fatwa Against photography!" :

What is so catchy about the following post? In one word, its made to sound moronic. There is nothing to be 'amazed' about a fatwa banning photography (although exceptions are labelled in the same article). BDnews can in no way prove that such a 'fatwa' is wrong. What BDnews has done is draw up far fetched conclusions that are made to sound as if they have credible weight, when in fact all they sound is like rubbish:

1. The headline outlines a negative aura emanated by the article labeled "Now Fatwa Against photography! "

2. The article creates doubt by providing multiple 'pretentiously' labeled Islamic stands against/for photography, throwing Deobandi, Wahhabi and Shia facets into the mix.

3. Then it leaves behind all logic as it abruptly changes the scenario to focus on Bangladesh, announcing for fact that "On Jan 1, 2001 the High Court in Bangladesh declared fatwa illegal."

3. Finally, it turns the practice of fatwa into a crime altogether, as it relegates the fatwa to being a mere "tool of extra legal punishment" when in real terms, a fatwa is simply a ruling on a point of an Islamic law given by learned religious authority.

Effectively, all fatwa givers have been labelled as boogeymen.

And you fell for it.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Yes Felani, I am guilty too

It was only a few days ago that the BSF announced that they would hold a trial. A trial of a murder committed on barbed wires defying conscience. A murder that made a nation cry and shamed another. Many rejoiced at the announcement that the family of Felani would get justice and that the people of Bangladesh would have the opportunity to sample some legendary Indian justice. Above all, a nation was eagerly waiting, looking for a gesture of goodwill which was more than mere words.

As the judges read out their judgment, millions of heads on the other side of the fence crashed in shame that they had ever hoped for justice. Many listened to the news of the verdict with tears in their eyes.

The special BSF court in India’s Cooch Bihar on Friday acquitted Indian border guard Amiya Ghosh, the only accused in the killing of Bangladeshi teenager Felani Khatun, citing him innocent. Following the verdict, the accused BSF jawan was released immediately. It was done and dusted. They had given their verdict. Justice had been served. Meanwhile, the silent tears of Felani’s family continued to flow.

To those hoping for justice from Bangladesh, two facets of the above trial became clear immediately. One was that the BSF never intended to provide any justice. The courts were ultimately set to give a legal cover for the murder, which was initially marketed by the BSF itself as “a good guy shoots the bad guy” in a failed bid to lessen the brutality.

To cool off tensions, sometime later the then interior minister of India, P.Chidambaram, came to Dhaka and promised that the BSF would never again under any circumstance ‘kill’ any unarmed civilian. It is sad that I have to repeat myself in saying that such promises have been broken, time and again, repeatedly, sans any remorse or fear of prosecution.

The second facet of the above trial is more glaring and more within our grasp to question. What has the government of Bangladesh done to ensure the fair trial of Felani? Why has the government not pressured through relevant channels or even shown an iota of concern in this regard? It shall be ironic when we remind ourselves that the ones who spoke so much about justice for Felani are the ones who are victims of some of the most oppressive clampdowns during the tenure of the present government. Yes, it shall be wise that we remember that Mr. Adilur Rahman Khan, one of the most vocal critics fighting for justice for Felani, has been languishing in prison without a proper trial for more than three weeks now. His fault was being critical of government actions, something he has been paying dearly for.

The BSF killed Felani and denigrated her to subhuman depths. The government of Bangladesh failed Felani. We failed Felani. That brings me to a hard conclusion. The message is clear. This is a world of the survival of fittest. However heartless and irrational it may seem, the denigration of Felani has become a stamp of superiority for Indians. The judgment is proof that “Indians can”. The fact that the world cannot do a thing about the murder of Felani is proof of the true face of the geopolitical dynamics of the region. It is not India who should be the centre of complaint and attention of us Bangladeshis. It should be Bangladesh. It should be about how we elect and re-elect successive meek minded stooges for government posts. We should focus on our weak foreign policy, address our superficially idiotic divisions and stop complaining about how advanced the world has become. It was our own weak and inconsequential stand that killed Felani. Remember this, if you are stupid enough to expect justice from the one who just clubbed you on the head, all you deserve is another good clobbering.

Yes Felani, I am guilty too.

Let Felani’s sacrifice not go in vain. May the Almighty open our eyes and expand our hearts. May we live as free thinking citizens.

And Allah Knows Best.