Tag Archives: limitation of witnesses

27 August 2013: ICT-1 Daily Summary – Nizami Prosecution Application for Additional Witnesses

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Motiur Rahman Nizami

Today Tribunal the Tribunal heard an application filed by the Prosecution in the Nizami case requesting additional witnesses be admitted under section 9(4) of the ICT Act 1973. The Prosecution argued that under section 19(1) of the ICT Act 1973 the Tribunal is not bound by technical rules of evidence and so there is no bar to allowing additional witnesses at this stage of the proceedings. They further argued that during the investigation material witnesses were found and requested that they be allowed to testify in the interest of justice.

The Defense opposed the Prosecution’s  application. They noted that the Prosecution specifically mentioned that the Investigation Officer was conducting further investigation for the purpose of collecting additional witnesses. Citing Rule 11 of the Rules of Procedure, the Defense submitted that the investigation cannot continue for such an uncertain period of time. They asserted that the Prosecution applied for these additional witnesses because their case was insufficent. The Defense argued that the Prosecution did not even explain why they had failed to bring the witnesses from the previous list, a list containing more than 100 witnesses. They deemed the application to be demonstrative of malafide intent and submitted that if Tribunal allowed the additional witnesses at this stage of the trial it would hamper the Defense’s ability to prepare and thereby prejudice the Accused. They requested the Tribunal to reject the application.

After hearing both the sides Tribunal passed an order allowing five additional witnesses. The Prosecution then requested permission to call one of these witnesses to testify as he was present at the Tribunal. The Defense objected and the Tribunal questioned how the Prosecution had seen fit to bring the witness to the Tribunal when they could not have known how the Tribunal would rule on its application. The Defense requested an additional 10 days to prepare for the additional witnesses. The Prosecution opposed the prayer and submitted that there is no scope under law for giving such time. The Tribunal scheduled 29 August for recording the examination-in-chief of Prosecution witness 18 and 1 September for cross-examination.

23 July 2013: ICT-1 Daily Summary – Chowdhury Defense Applications

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Salauddin Qader Chowdhury

The Tribunal was scheduled to hear the examination-in-chief of Defense Witness 4. However, the Defense filed two applications, one for adjournment in order to produce Defense witnesses 4 & 5, and another requesting the Tribunal to accept an affidavit from the mother of Shamim Hasnain (one of the 5 proposed Defense witnesses) into evidence.

The Defense submitted that Shamim Hasnain is willing to depose. Shamim Hasnain is a judge of the High Court and has requested leave from his institution to testify before the Tribunal. He and the Defense are awaiting for the Chief Justice’s approval. In light of the pending request, the Defense requested adjournment of the case until 28 July.

The Defense additionally informed the Tribunal that Salman F Rahman, one of the 5 proposed Defense witnesses, has fallen sick while traveling to Mecca. They submitted that he would be available after Ramadan to provide testimony before the Tribunal and requested that his testimony be scheduled accordingly. The Prosecution opposed the prayer saying that the application is being filed in order to delay the proceedings of the Tribunal. The Tribunal passed an order stating that the application for adjournment was is supported by any evidence and that the Tribuna would give a last chance for the production of the Defense witness by fixing 24 July as the deadline to produce Defense witnesses 4 and 5.

Regarding the second application, the Defense submitted that the mother of Shamim Hasnain has provided a worn affidavit regarding Salauddin Qader Chowdhury’s alibi that he was in Pakistan in 1971. The Prosecution opposed the application saying that in this stage of Trial there is no scope to file any affidavit before the Tribunal. After hearing both the sides, Tribunal rejected the application stating that Shamim Hasnain is one of the proposed Defense witness and likely to depose before the Tribunal.

24 June 2013: ICT-1 Daily Summary – Chowdhury Testimony and Defense Applications

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Salauddin Qader Chowdhury

Today in the Chowdhury case the Tribunal heard three petitions filed by Defense. The first petition requested review of the June 13th order limiting the Defense to 5 witnesses. The second requested adjournment of the case until the terms of reference are disposed off in the Abdul Qader Mollah case at the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court. The third application requested that Serial No. 31 of the seizure list be designated as illegal. After hearing arguments from both parties the Tribunal fixed 26 June for passing its order. Thereafter, Tribunal heard the testimony of Defendant Salauddin Qader Chowdhury, Defense witness 1, for the sixth day and adjourned the proceedings of the case until 26 June 2013. Continue reading

13 June 2013 ICT-1 Daily Summary – Chowdhury Cross Examination PW 41, Abdus Sobhan Pre-Trial

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Salauddin Qader Chowdhury
  2. Investigation of Abdus Sobhan

In the Chowdhury case, the Defense concluded the cross-examination of Investigation Officer Md Nurul Islam, Prosecution witness 41. The Tribunal also heard an application submitted by Prosecution requesting the Tribunal to reject the Defense’s list of 1153 witnesses. The Prosecution argued that the list did not comply with Rule 51A (1) and did not specify the particulars of which witnesses would testify as to which charges, or on which points the Defense intended to examine the witness. The Prosecution also argued that list repeated the name of certain witnesses. The Defense countered that the list is short considering the political career of the Accused. They stated that while some names are similar, they are not repetitions.

The Tribunal verbally granted the Prosecution’s application with modification. They limited the Defense to 5 witnesses. The Defense objected, stating that there are 23 charges against the accused and that 41 prosecution witnesses testified against CHowdhury. They argued that being limited to 5 witnesses would prejudice their case. The Tribunal did not respond to their objection.The Tribunal then adjourned the proceedings of the case until Monday, 17 July 2013, even if, Defense prayed for more time.

In the ongoing investigation of Abdus Sobhan, the Prosecution submitted their progress report and sought additional time. Tribunal allowed the prayer and adjourned the proceedings of the case until 14 July 2013.  Continue reading

25 Feb 2013: ICT-2 Daily Summary – Kamaruzzaman Defense Applications, Alim Continuance

Today the Tribunal heard matters in the following cases:

  1. Chief Prosecutor vs. Muhammad Kamaruzzaman: Two Defense Applications
  2. Chief Prosecutor vs. Abdul Alim: Defens Request for Additional Time

Today the Tribunal heard two Defense applications in the Kamaruzzaman case. The first was an application to recall the court’s order ending the cross-examination of Prosecution witness18, the Investigation Officer. The order was issued after Defense counsel Kafil Uddin Chowdhury failed to complete the cross-examination within the time stipulated by the court. On 20 February 2013 (Wednesday), the court instructed the Defense to finish the cross-examination before lunch break on Sunday, February 24th. The Defense was absent on Sunday however, due to the ongoing hartal (strike). The Tribunal nonetheless announced that the cross-examination was completed after the lunch recess on the 24th. The second application was a request to allow the Defense to submit additional documents into evidence.

In the Alim case the Tribunal granted a request from the Defense for additional time due to the inability of the senior Defense counsel to attend.

Continue reading