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Dhaka Tribune

ICT: Evidence against Jamaat leader Yusuf

Update : 22 Apr 2013, 11:49 AM

The investigation agency of the International Crimes Tribunal has finalised a 111-page probe report against Jamaat-e-Islami leader AKM Yusuf for his “involvement” in murder, genocide, looting and torture on minorities during the 1971 Liberation War.

While briefing reporters, the agency’s coordinator Abdul Hannan said they will bring 15 charges against Yusuf, who is known as the founder of the Razakar (collaborator) force.

“We will submit the probe report to the prosecution soon and the prosecution will appeal to the tribunal for issuing arrest order against him [Yusuf],” Hannan said at the agency’s office on Dhanmondi Road No 27 in the capital.

Hannan further informed the media that the investigators have found Yusuf’s involvement in the murder of eight people and mass killing of 700 others, looting 300 houses and 400 shops, and forcing 200 Hindus to convert to Islam.

According to “Ekattorer Ghatak O Dalalra Ke Kothay,” a book published by Muktijuddha Chetana Bikash Kendra, AKM Yusuf, nayeb-e-ameer of Jamaat, established the Razakar force as an auxiliary force of the Pakistani army on May 5, 1971, at an Ansar camp on Khan Jahan Ali Road in Khulna with 96 Jamaat activists.

Before that, Yusuf – chairman of the so-called peace committee of greater Khulna (Khulna, Satkhira and Bagerhat) at that time – had formed peace committees in every sub-division, police station and union levels.

The war crimes suspect had gathered men to form the Razakar force since April 18, 1971.

According to the book, Yusuf, who was a member of AM Malek’s cabinet in 1971, monitored activities of several peace committees, Razakar and al-Badr forces and delivered speeches at different anti-liberation rallies.

As per different historic documents, Razakars were active in Bangladesh from May 1971, but the then Pakistan government formally established the force through a gazette notification on August 2.

The probe agency started the investigation into the alleged crimes of Yusuf, who hails from Rajair Kaliarpar under Sarankhola upazila in Bagerhat, on January 22, 2012. Yusuf was reportedly arrested after the Collaborator Order 1972 was formulated but was released after cancellation of the law on December 31, 1975.

The tribunal has already delivered verdicts against Jamaat leaders Abdul Qader Mollah and Delawar Hossain Sayedee while two war crime cases against former Jamaat chief Ghulam Azam and Muhammad Kamaruzzaman are awaiting verdict.

Expelled Jamaat member Abul Kalam Azad was also sentenced to death.

Besides, Jamaat Ameer Motiur Rahman Nizami and Secretary General Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed are facing trials. Investigations against three detained Jamaat leaders – Mir Quashem Ali, Abdus Sobhan and ATM Azharul Islam – are underway.

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