Tag Archives: hostile witness

13 May 2013: ICT-2 Daily Summary – Alim PW 19

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Abdul Alim

The Prosecution heard testimony from Prosecution witness 19 in the case of Abdul Alim. The witness described being detained and tortured by the Pakistani Army during the war in 1971. However, the witness did not make any incriminating statements about Alim. Because the witness was not making statements regarding alim the Prosecutor Rana Das Gupta requested that the Tribunal declare Prosecution witness 19 to be a hostile witness. The Tribunal granted the request and allowed the Prosecutor to effectively cross-examine the witness. At the end of the questioning the Prosecutor alleged that the witness was either intimidated by the Defense and their supporters or bribed to conceal the truth. The Defense did not cross-examine the witness, but commented that the witness is s stating truth of his own free will.

Prosecution Witness 19
Abed Hossain testified as Prosecution witness 19. He stated that on 18 June 1971, he was picked up by the Pakistani Army from the yard of a local mosque situated in his village or Chakbarkat Sonarpara, Jaipurhat district. He asserted that it was the Pakistani army who carried out the operation and detained many others along with him. He stated that the Pakistani army then tortured him while he was in custody. He thought that as many as 22 people were killed by the army, although he managed to survive.

During the examination in chief, the witness made no mention of Abdul Alim and thus did not support the Prosecution’s claim that the Accused was involved in the witness’ detention and torture. Even after repeated questioning by the Prosecutor the witness failed to identify any factor showing the involvement of the Accused in his abduction and torture. He also did not implicate Alim in the detention, torture or killing of any other person. The witness highlighted that the atrocities were committed mainly by the Pakistani Army.

The Prosecution then received permission to treat the witness as hostile and to cross-examine him. During the cross-examination, the prosecutor Rana Das Gupta alleged that the witness was either politically motivated, financially manipulated or otherwise intimidated into changing his testimony.

The Prosecution asked whether the witness was a supporter of any political party and which political party the witness voted for in the last parliamentary election. The judges quickly interrupted and condemned this line of questioning, saying that such questioning would not be tolerated. The judges affirmed that the witness may vote for anyone of his choice and will never be expected to disclose his choices before the Tribunal. The cross-examination was then concluded by the prosecutor with the suggestion that the witness is concealing the involvement of the accused by reason of intimidation or corruption.

The Defense did not conduct a separate cross-examination of the witness and merely stated that the witness was voluntarily testifying and was stating the truth. 

12 May 2013: ICT-1 Daily Summary – Hartal, Nizami PW 7, AKM Yusuf Cognizance of Charges

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs Motiur Rahman Nizami 
  2. Chief Prosecution vs AKM Yusuf

In the Nizami case the Tribunal heard the examination-in-chief of Prosecution Witness 7, Pardip Kumar Dev, who testified in support of charge 4. This charge alleges that Motiur Rahman Nizami conspired to commit crimes under section 3(2)(g) of the ICT Act 1973 and was complicit in murders, rapes, looting and destruction of properties committed in the village Karamja,  The charge alleges both accomplice liability under Section 4(1) and Command Responsibility liability under Section4(2) of the ICT Act 1973.

Pardip testified that during the killing he saw Sukur, Afzal, Asad, and Moslem Gong at the site of the  incident. He stated he could not recall whether he was interviewed previously by the Investigating Officer. After asking a few question during which the witness did not implicate the Accused, Prosecutor Mir Iqbal requested permission to declar Pradip Kumar Dey as a hostile witness. The Tribunal granted the request and allowed the Prosecutor to continue as though cross-examining the witness. The Prosecution then suggested that the witness was interviewed by the Investigation Officer on  6 November 2011 and that he accused Motiur Rahman Nizami and Rofiqun Nabi of being involved in the killing. The witness answered that he does not remember the interview. The Prosecution then suggested that he saw Nizami at the site of the alleged killing but is now denying the fact because of financial coercion from the Defense. The witness denied the suggestion. Subsequently the Defense declined to cross-examine the witness.

Today the Tribunal additionally  took cognizance of the Formal Charges submitted against AKM Yusuf and issued a warrant for the suspect’s arrest .They requested that law enforcement  produce AKM Yusuf by 26 May 2013.

AKM Yusuf was produced before the Tribunal in the afternoon and the Tribunal sent him  to the jail to be detained until trial. The decision to send him to jail was made in-chambers.