26 September 2013: ICT-1 Daily Summary –Motiur Rahman Nizami, PW-26; Contempt Charges against Channel 24 and others

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Channel 24 and others
  2. Chief Prosecutor vs. Motiur Rahman Nizami

Contempt Proceedings

On 25 September 2013, the Tribunal heard a petition filed by Prosecution for contempt under section 11(4) of the ICT Act 1973 read with Rule 45 of Rules of Procedure 2010 against a number of Channel 24 personnel and affiliates. Todaythe Tribunal issued a notice towards the named individuals, asking them to reply by 10 October 2013, explaining why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them. The Order specifically called Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury and Mahfuz Ullah to appear before the Tribunal in person.  The Court further asked Channel 24 not to re-broadcast the impugned talk-show episode. The Order declared that talk-show guests, Dr. Zafrullah Chowdhury and Mahfuz Ullah had publically discussed a matter subjudice, without knowing the factual aspects, and had deliberately called into question the trial proceedings. Channel 24 had facilitated this behavior by broadcasting the offending statements of the guests. 

Chief Prosecutor vs. Motiur Rahman Nizami

In the case of the Motiur Rahman Nizami, the Tribunal recorded the testimony of the Investigation Officer (IO) Abdur Razzak, Prosecution witness 26. Thereafter, the Defense started to cross-examine the witness.

 Examination of PW-26

Abdur Razzak Khan, PW-26, exhibited a fortnightly report on the political situation, Volume 9, page 2637-2641 as Exhibit 17, and pages 2650 –2798 (16 items) as Exhibit 18 to 18/15, which was seized by Investigation Officer Motiur Rahman from Kushtia on 3 March 2011. Abdur Razzak testified that items number 5, 9 and 12 showed that Motiur Rahman Nizami gave speeches to the activists of the Islami Chhatra Shangho as the Secretary of Islami Chhatra Shangho during the Liberation War. Abdur Razzak testified that on 8 May 1971 Megha Thakur and seven others were shot by Pakistani Occupation Force and their accomplices and the corpses were buried beside the house of Megha Thakur. He further testified that on 7 December 2012, the skeletons of the corpses were recovered. On 9 March 2011, he seized these skeletons and made a seizure list, which was exhibited at trial as Exhibit 19. He testified that he kept the skeletons under the custody of SI Rezaul Karim. The seizure list entered into evidence as Exhibit 20.

Abdur Razzak exhibited 30 certified copies of the Daily Observer, Volume 8, pages 2562- 2600 as Exhibits 22 to 22/29. He exhibited 25 certified copies of the Daily Ittefaq, Volume-8, pages 2608- 2637 as Exhibits 2 to 2/24. He exhibited a certified copy of the Daily Bhorer Kagoj dated 1 November 2007 as Exhibit 26. Abdur Razzak exhibited 4 books as Exhibits 28-28/3.

The witness testified that after investigation he submitted the Investigation Report on 30 October 2011. He testified that he continued his service to collect additional evidence against Motiur Rahman Nizami.  He collected a book titled ‘Bangladesh-a Moulabad and Shamprodaikota’ written by Shahriar Kabir. He exhibited the book as Exhibit 30. He also collected a book titled ‘Sectarianism and Politico-Religious Terrorism in Pakistan,’ written by Musa Khan Jalajai (Exhibit 31), a book titled ‘Pabna Zilla-r Muktijuddher Kotha,’ written by Md Johirul Islam Bishu (Exhibit 33), a book titled ‘Ekkator-r Ghatokera Ke Kothai,’ written by Dr Ahmed Sharif (Exhibit 35), and a book titled ‘Ekattorer Dinguli’ written by Jahanara Imam (Exhibit 37).

Abdur Razzak testified that the investigation officer Monowara Begum recorded the testimony of the following witnesses on the following dates:

  • Shemoli Nasrin Chowdhury on 10 March 2011
  • Sayeda Salma Mahmud alias Haque on 25 August 2012
  • Md Jane Alam Janu on 30 June 2012
  • Alhaz Tahurul Alam Mollah on 16 May 2013
  • Zohurul Haque, Md Eusuf Ali Biswas and Abu Shama Fakir on 17 May 2013
  • Sahjahan Ali on 19 May 2013

Abdur Razzak recorded the testimony of the following witnesses on the following dates:

  • Shankor Hawladar and Ansar Pramanik on 06 November 2010
  • Shomor Chandra Kundo on 27 August 2011

Abdur Razzak testified that Shankor Hawladar died on 27 February 2012, Ansar Ali Pramanik died on 25 May 2013 and Shamar Chandra Kunda died on 16 February 2012. Abdur Razzak exhibited the testimony of Shankor Hawladar as Exhibit 38, the testimony of Ansar Ali Pramanik as Exhibit 39 and the testimony of Shamar Chandra Kunda as Exhibit 40.