Friday, July 6, 2012

24 May 2012: Chowdhury 2nd witness cross exam day 3

Ahsanul Haque , the defence counsel started proceedings by raising a point about bdnews. ‘My Lord I would like to raise an objection against the news circulated by on the previous day. It has mentioned me as conducting unprofessional attitude.’

Then the counsel quoted and then submitted the report to the tribunal, which was all about the previous days’ report on the cross examination of the Prosecution witness M. Salimullah; in the case of Salahudin Quader Chowdhury.

Chairman: What should we say now? We have talked about these matters day after day. Journalists are cooperating with us a lot, but sometimes they’re publishing such kinds of news which create misconceptions among everyone.

Defence: I pray to your lordships to take action against the reporter. Is he a person to measure what is professional or non professional in the legal framework.

Chairman: [Talking to the press who were present at the tribunal.] We’re saying it several times since the beginning that you must be cautious about choosing your words for a particular report. Mr. Counsel, I do agree that he didn’t do the right thing by mentioning the term non-professional. He is not the person to measure what is right or wrong.

Defence: I pray to your lordships to take action.

Chairman: Mr. Counsel, we’ll look after the matter later on. Please take your seat for a while and drink some water and calm down, don’t be so angry.

The defence lawyer, Ahsanul Haque, then continued his cross examination of the prosecution witness M Salimullah (carrying on from pervious day)
Defence: In 1971 Chittagong District was under the Chittagong District.

Witness: Yes.

Defence: Who was the secretary of Chittagong Peace Committee?

Witness: I don’t know. But Mr. Advocate Johurul Haque was the Chairman of the same Committee. [Advocate Johurul Haque is father of the defence counsel Ahsanul Haque].

Defence: Do you have any documentary evidence supporting the assertion that Advocate Johurul Haque was the chairman of the Peace Committee?

Witness: I don’t have such documents going 40 years back, but I’ve heard.

Defence: With a deceitful intention you’re stating such wrong things about Advocate Johurul Haque before the tribunal.

Witness: Not true. I’m telling the correct thing.

Defence: You have gone to Goods Hill with the Investigation Officer; just because of taking an advantage for making this deposition before tribunal by visiting the area.

Witness: Not true.

Defence: Could you tell us the measurement of the area over the Goods Hill?

Witness: I have not seen the Khatian sheet (Papers relating to the ownership of land).

Defence: You didn’t ever go to Goods Hill earlier?

Witness: Not true.

Defence: Is your nephew Isa still alive?

Witness: Yes.

Defence: Did you ever tell him the story of your abduction and how you were taken over to Goods Hill.

Witness: No.

Defence: You met Isa at your village and you’ve talked with him.

Witness: Isa is my youngest nephew; it is not necessary to visit him at village. When he went to my house at 5 Jamalkhan Road in Chittagong, then we have talked.

Defence: There is no mentioning of your story in any book written over the incidents of the period of Liberation war.

Witness: Not true. As far as I know, there are two or one book where my incident [at Goods Hill] have been mentioned.

Defence: Whether you have mentioned your story to your friends Mr. Runu and Mr. Nihar?

Witness: After the liberation war when they get back to country, then I’ve mentioned the incident to them.

Defence: Whether you have told it to your wife.

Witness: I didn’t mention it. She knew by herself.

Defence: Whether your wife was with you; when you have been abducted?

Witness: No.

Defence: Does your wife reside abroad?

Witness: No. She is living in the country.

Defence: Whether your wife is a witness in this case?

Witness: No.

Defence: You didn’t mention the quoted words to the Investigation Officer- “At morning hour the sons of Mr. Chowdhury took training with rifle and pistol; afterwards if they think that it was necessary, they shot the people who were being restrained in the garage.”

Witness: Not true. I’ve mentioned it.

Defence: You have mentioned the following words to the investigation officer—“Then I’ve assumed they will kill me by the same way; then I’ve thought about my 4 months old daughter more than anyone and prayed to Almighty; and take the preparation for the death.”

Witness: Not true. I’ve mentioned it.

Defence: Whether your friend Shafiqur Rahman is alive?

Witness: Yes.

Defence: Whether you have told your miserable incident to Mr. Shafiqul Rahman?

Witness: By geeting to know the fact of my abduction we went there to rescue me. It was not necessary to tell him.

Defence: From whom did your wife and your friend find out about your abduction; did you ever ask them?

Witness: I don’t think it necessary to ask any way.

Defence: You didn’t mention the quoted verses to the Investigation Officer—“I’ve got my life back by drinking that water, otherwise I might die.”

Witness: I’ve mentioned.

Defence: You have given false deposition by stating that- “Till date my companions -- the Kholifa (tailor) of Satkania and my workers Doyal and Shopon have not been found anywhere. I think after being abducted, they have been killed and their corpses have been disposed of by not letting anyone known about the incident.”

Witness: Not true.

Defence: You didn’t mention the name of your workers Shopon and Doyal to the Investigation Officer.

Witness: I’ve mentioned.

Defence: Did you file any case for your workers- Doyal and Shopon?

Witness: No.

Defence: So many non-Muslim people have left the country towards India to take refuge in 1946, 1947, 1961, 1965, 1971 and 1975.

Witness: I don’t know who have gone or return to and from India on those timeframe.

Defence: Please mention some names whose corpses have been thrown to the river Karnafuly.

Witness: I don’t know.

Defence: Whether Mahabub and Hamidul Haque Khoka are alive or dead?

Witness: It is not required for me to know this.

Defence: Did you ever organise any search for Mahabub and Hamidul Haque Khoka?

Witness: No. I’ve heard they fled away from the country.

Defence: You are giving false statement on the advice of your nephew- Anisul Islam.

Witness: Not true. As far I know, Anisul Islam was the friend of Saqa Chowdhury.

[Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury: [From the accused box shouted loudly towards the accused by calling the PW-2--- “Beyadop… [Idiot]”]

Defence: Mr. Salimullah why do you call him Saqa Chowdhury, you should call him by his full name.

Defence: It is false that you have taken to Goods Hill and has been tortured.

Witness: It is true.

Defence: The local boys have pushed you to the Army Car and the car took you away.

Witness: It is not true.

Defence: You are giving false deposition in this false case by being motivated by a certain group- who are the political opponents of the following accused.

Witness: It’s not true.

Adjournment until afternoon

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