Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Quader Molla appeal, day 18: Defence arguments

2 June 2013

Today there were 5 judges instead of 6 as on the previous thursday, 30.05.2013, one of the newly appointed judges in the Appellate Division Mr Siddiqur Rahman Miah retired from the service as he attained the age of retirement (currently 67 years) for the judges’ of the higher judiciary (Supreme Court).

Defence lawyer, Barrister Razzaq went to dais and started his submission with following words, “the previous day I was making my submission in relation to charge no. 03 and now I shall start with the witness testimony of P.W. 5 Khandoker Abul Ahsan (the survived son of victim Khandoker Abu Taleb) at page 576 of volume 2. However, before I start may please know whether this bench (which is now constituted of 5 judges) will continue hearing this appeal (as one of the member of the bench retired the previous day)? The CJ replied, “Even 4 judges are sufficiently competent to hear this appeal and we are 5 here so there will be no problem. Please continue.”

Razzaq then started reading out the witness testimony of the prosecution witness 5.

Razzaq then continued reading the deposition given by P.W. 5 He read both the examination and cross-examination including contradiction. As soon as finished, Sinha J. pointed out a part of P.W. 5 deposition at page 577 where he deposed as follows:

“On 29 March, my father (victim) was about to go to their Mirpur residence for bringing his car and money there from but on his way to Mirpur he had occasion to meet one non Bengali Abdul Halim, the chief accountant of the ‘Daily Ittefaque’ who in the name of taking him to Mirpur by his own car brought him (victim) to the accused Abdul Quader Molla and then his father was slaughtered by the accused to death by repeated dagger blows at Mirpur 10 ‘Jallad Khana’ and at that time Aktar Goonda and some non Bangalee were with Abdul Quader Molla (accused).”

Sinha J. asked for Razzaq’s comment on this particular part the witness expressly mentioned accused petitioner Molla’s name in his testimony. In reply, Mr Razzaq said, “My lord, I shall make my submission about that later on. Let me now move to the contradiction of P.W. 5 testimony with another P.W. for the same charge P.W. 10 Mr Syed Abdul Qayum, a friend of the victim.”

He then continued, “My Lord, at page 5 his witness testimony, he deposed that he met Faruk Khan, a friend of the victim Khandoker Abu Taleb, in the month of June 1971 when he had been at his native village Nasirnagar. From him P.W.10 came to know that local Aktar Goonda, Biharis and Abdul Quader Molla had killed the victim at Mirpur 10 ‘Jallad Khana’. He (P.W.10) returned home on 3 January 1972 after the independence. After he came to know from Nizam, the non-Bangalee driver of victim that he (victim) was coming his home at Mirpur with non-Bengali accountant Halim but Halim handed him (victim) over to the Biharis who slaughtered him to death at ‘Jallad khana’ (killing place).

Now, my lords, both of the prosecution witnesses are hearsay witnesses i.e. none of the prosecution witness actually seen the event, rather they heard about the event from a non-Bangalee Nizam (victim’s driver).”

He then argued, “the witness in his testimony mentioned ‘someone named Molla’. There is no clarification that who is that Molla. Let me come to the next page where the witness deposed someone named Molla saved his life. At the 2nd paragraph of page 10 of his testimony, the witness testified, ‘he who saved my, I used to treat him with tea and biscuit (from the tea stall) if I met him on the streets. He had got long beard and his name was some Molla. Further, P.W. 5, in his statement clearly stated that his father was killed by Biharis.”

He then continued with prosecution witness statement before I.O., “Now let us move P.W. 10’s statement to I.O. at page 1724 (4th line from the top)”. He then readout the statement and then submitted, “Accused Abdul Quader Molla had not been referred anywhere in this statement. He clearly stated that he (accused) was killed by Biharis. Next let us move to P.W. 5 statement before the I.O. at page 1726.” He readout the statement and argued, “Nowhere in his statement Abdul Quader Molla’s was not mentioned.” He then agreed, “the name of the Abdul Quader Molla were mentioned in the statement by victim’s son in relation to his father’s killing; the statement was made in 2010 though.”

Razzaq then moved to Kazi Rosy (P.W.)’s writings in relation to victim Khandoker Abu Taleb. He narrated from Kazi Rosy’s book, “He (victim) was attacked by non-Bangalees and they slaughtered him into pieces. It was heard that someone named Abdul Malek (non-Bangalee/Bihari) assured him (victim) assured him that the situation at Mirpur was normal. He (Malek) took him to Mirpur and then handed over him (victim) to Biharis (non-Bangalee).”

He continued with the evaluation of evidence and findings of the Tribunal in relation to the charge no. 03. He readout from the judgement.

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