Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:
- Chief Prosecutor vs. Abdul Alim
In the Alim case the Prosecution called Prosecution witness 24, Bhagirath Chandra Barman, to testify. After the completion of the examination-in-chief the Tribunal scheduled his cross-examiantion for 16 June 2013. Barman testified as an eye-witness.
He is a relative of multiple victims. He provided his personal his details. He then stated that Alim was the chairman of Jaipurhat Peace Committee, which he claimed was an auxiliary force to the Pakistani Army. He stated that Alim was assisted by the Pakistani Army and the local Peace Committee members in committing the killings.
The witness stated that on a Monday, approximately in the second week of the Bengali month of Boishakh,1971, the Pakistani Armi entered the village of Kadipur accompanied by local Peace Committee members. Upon seeing them arrive the witness claimed he ran towards his home and then attempted to escape towards the north along with his family members. However, before they could manage to escape, members of the Peace Committee and the Pakistani Army surrounded them. The witness stated that around 50 to 55 people of the local community were gathered near the bank of a pond located to the east of the witness’s house. The pond is locally known as “Dom Pukur.” The witness stated that the Peace Committee members then segregated the men from the women and took them to the slant of the pond.
Barman stated that he managed to escape from the pondside and reached his home. From there he once again headed north. On his way, he claimed that he saw the men gathered at the edge of the pond being shot one after another. Barman claimed he then went to a place called Korai Palpara, but arriving there he saw that it was deserted and that all the Hindu people from the area were fleeing north. The witness testified that he then went to Korai Alia Madrasa (an Islamic educational institution) where he saw that local Peace Committee members were chasing Hindus who attempted to escape the vicinity. Many were captured and handed over to the Pakistani Army who shot them.
The witness further testified that he then returned to the Dom pond and found 80-85 dead, most of whom were his relatives and neighbors. Amongst the dead were his paternal uncle Boni Kanta, Bongo, Ghona, Shontosh, Krishna, Shiben, Duka, Prionath, Mahendra, Jogen Chandra and many others. The witness began to cry while describing his experience.
Barman claimed that he later managed to take refuge in India along with 300-350 Hindu people from the Barmanpara and Palpara areas. After returning to Bangladesh after the war he stated that he found nothing left of his home. He stated that one Afsar, who was among those who looted the area, told him that Alim did not allow anyone else to keep any of the looted things and kept everything for himself.