Sunday, July 31, 2011

21 July 2011: Alim in court

Md Abdul Alim was brought to the Tribunal and a progress report into his investigation was submitted by the prosecution.

Alim is the only one of the accused who has obtained bail. See here for hearing where he got bail.

Haider Ali, a prosecutor, said that progress in the investigation was good, evidence has been found, and pointed to parts of the report which explained why the investigators needed more time, and what evidence had already been obtained.

He then sought 6 months to complete the investigation. The tribunal chair however said that the rules say that every three months the tribunal shall review the investigation report.

Another prosecutor, Mr Zead Al Malum then stood up and started to read out various passages of a press release that had been issued by the Jamaat-e-Islami which was critical of the tribunal. The tribunal chair then said that he should raise it again after they passed the order.

After consultation between the judges for a few minutes - the longest pre-order consultation between the judges so far - the following order was passed:
‘Accused Md. Abdul Alim alias M A. Alim is present in the Court today. The prosecution has submitted a progress report regarding the development of the investigation of the case against him. Copy has been served. We have perused the report. We have heard Mr. S Haider Ali, the learned prosecutor who stated that the investigation is going on in this respect and have collected evidences about atrocities committed during war of 1971. He prayed for further time to continue the investigation.

On the other hand Mr. M. Tajul Islam, learned counsel appearing on behalf of the petitioner stated that the accused-petitioner is on bail. As such he has no objection if time allowed for conclusion of investigation, but objected to some averments made in the progress report.

We have heard both the side. We are of the view that for the ends of justice some more time for prosecution to complete investigation. Let the date be fixed on 16-10-11. On that day the the investigation agency is to submit investigation report or progress report whichever is available. The accused-petitioner must also be present before this tribunal on that date.
After passing the Order, the prosecutor, Mr Zead Al Malum again stood up and read out parts of the Jammaat press release.

The chairman said that this was not a public document, but that if it had been published in the newspapers they would have issued a suo-moto rule in relation to it. He told the prosecutor that he should raise the issue in a formal application to the tribunal.

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