Saturday, March 29, 2014

20 Presidents of Bangladesh -Sumi Khan

1. Sheikh Mujibar Rahman
(17-04-1971 to 12 -01-1972)

Syed Nazrul Islam  (Acting)
(17-04 1971 to 09-01-1972)

2. Justice Abu Sayeed Chowdhury


3)  Mohammadullah 

(24-12-1973 to 25-01-1975)

4)Sheikh Mujibor Rahman

(25-08-1975 to  15-08-1975)

5)Khandokar Mushtaq Ahmed
(16-08-1975 to 06-11-1975)

6)Justice A S M Sayem


7) Justice Abdus Satter
30-05-1981 to 23-03-1982)

8)Justice A F M Ahsanuddin Chowdhury

(24-03-1982 to 10-12-1983)

9) Justice  A F M Ahsanuddin Choudhury
(24-03-1982- 10-12-1983)

10) Hussain Muhammad Ershad
(10-12-1983  to 06-12-1990)

11) Justice Shahabuddin Ahmed 

(06-12-1990 to 09-10-1990)

12) Abdur Rahman Bishwash


13) Justice Shahabuddin Ahmed
(09-10-1996 to 14-11-2001)

14) A Q M Badruddoza Chowdhury

(14-11-2001 to 21-06 -2002)

15) Barrister Jamiruddin Sarkar (Caretaker)

16) Prof. Yazuddin Ahmed
(06-09-2002- 12-02-2009)

17) Zillur Rahman
(12-02-2009 to 20-03-2013)

18) Abdul Hamid
(14-03-2013 to present)

Friday, March 28, 2014

History, as the Zias see it :Syed Badrul Ahsan

 First it was the exiled Tarique Rahman, son of  Ziaur Rahman and Begum Khaleda Zia. Now it is his mother Khaleda Zia. Both have come up with new  misleading information about March 1971. 

If they are to be believed, it was Ziaur Rahman who was the first president of Bangladesh. It was again Zia who declared the country's independence as the Pakistan army cracked down on an unarmed Bengali nation on 25 March 1971.The facts pertaining to the declaration of Bangladesh speak for themselves.

David Loshak, in his article “Pakistan Crisis” written soon after the genocide of Bengalis went under way, had this to state on developments between 25-26 March:
“The voice of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman came faintly through on a wavelength close to that of the official Pakistan Radio. In what must have been, and sounded like, a pre-recorded message, the Sheikh proclaimed East Pakistan to be the People's Republic of Bangla Desh.”
That message of freedom, passed on to Chittagong Awami League leader MA Hannan (who read it out over radio) and which subsequently became part of official documents relating to the War of Liberation, read thus:
“This may be my last message. From today Bangla Desh is independent. I call upon the people of Bangla Desh, wherever you are and with whatever you have, to resist the army of occupation to the last. Your fight must go on until the last soldier of the Pakistan occupation army is expelled from the soil of Bangla Desh and final victory is achieved.”Commandos of the Pakistan army arrested Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman from his Dhanmondi residence in the early moments of 26 March 1971. As Siddik Salik notes in his “Witness to Surrender”: “Minutes later, Major Jaffar, Brigade Major of 57 Brigade, was on the wireless. I could hear his crisp voice saying 'BIG BIRD IN THE CAGE…OTHERS NOT IN THEIR NESTS…OVER'.”
On 27 March, organisers of the Biplobi Betar Kendra at Kalurghat in Chittagong made contact with Major Ziaur Rahman. At one point, Belal Mohammad, in less than serious mood, asked Zia if he had anything to say to the nation. Zia, as others were later to state, quickly went on air and, proclaiming himself president, “declared” Bangladesh's independence. That did not go down well with leading Bengalis in the port city, at that point yet to come under Pakistan army control. Eminent citizens like AK Khan and AR Mallick made it clear that such an announcement by Zia, an unknown major in the Pakistan army, would have no bearing on the resistance and in fact would be construed as a mutiny in the Pakistan army.
Zia quickly grasped the truth. Within minutes, he wrote out another statement, which he read out on the Biplobi Betar Kendra. The statement was the following:
“I, Major Zia, on behalf of our Great Leader, the Supreme Commander of Bangladesh, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, do hereby proclaim the independence of Bangla Desh and (sic) that the government headed by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman has already been formed.

It is further proclaimed that Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is the sole leader of the elected representatives of 75 million people of Bangla Desh and the government headed by him is the only legitimate government of the people of the independent sovereign state of Bangla Desh, which is legally and constitutionally formed and is worthy of being recognised by all the governments of the world.

I, therefore, appeal on behalf of our Great Leader Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to the governments of all the democratic countries of the world, especially the Big Powers and the neighbouring countries, to recognise the legal government of Bangla Desh and take effective steps to stop immediately the awful genocide that has been carried on by the army of occupation from Pakistan.

To dub us, the elected representatives of the majority of the people, as secessionists, is a cruel joke and should befool none.
The guiding principle of the new state will be, first, neutrality; second, peace; third, friendship to all and enmity to none.

May Allah help us.
Joi Bangla!”
Weeks later, on 17 April 1971, the Bangladesh provisional government was proclaimed in a region of Meherpur, Chuadanga (subsequently to be renamed as Mujibnagar). In the absence of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, who was officially proclaimed President of Bangladesh, Syed Nazrul Islam took charge as Acting President. Tajuddin Ahmed took over as Prime Minister, leading a small cabinet comprising M Mansoor Ali, AHM Quamruzzaman and Khondokar Moshtaque Ahmed as ministers.
Following liberation in December 1971, Bangabandhu returned to Bangladesh on 10 January 1972. He gave up the presidency, into which stepped Justice Abu Sayeed Chowdhury, and took charge as Prime Minister. Against the background of the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution in January 1975, when Bangladesh did away with the parliamentary system of government, Bangabandhu took over as President again.
After the assassination of the Father of the Nation in August 1975, events moved with dizzying speed in the country. Justice Abu Sadat Mohammad Sayem, installed as President on 6 November 1975 following the removal of Khondokar Moshtaque in a coup led by General Khaled Musharraf, remained in that office when on 7 November General Zia, earlier detained by Musharraf, rode to power. Initially proclaiming himself chief martial law administrator, within twenty-four hours he became one of the three deputy chief martial law administrators, with President Sayem taking upon himself the additional responsibility of chief martial law administrator.
Sayem was removed from presidential office in April 1977. He was replaced by Zia, who quickly organised a referendum that gave him “overwhelming support” to continue as President. In June 1978, still in military service, General Zia organised a presidential election in which he defeated his former commanding officer in the War of Liberation, General MAG Osmany. Ziaur Rahman was assassinated in an abortive coup d'etat in Chittagong on 30 May 1981. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Bangladesh sets Guinness World Record in chorus national anthem singing

DHAKA, March 26 (Xinhua) -- Tens of thousands of Bangladeshi volunteers along with the country's head of the government on Wednesday sang the national anthem in chorus in capital Dhaka on the country's Independence Day in a bid to breach Guinness World Record.
Organizers said 254,681 volunteers from the Bangladesh Army, educational institutions and the general public sang the national anthem in chorus at about 11:00 a.m. local time.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, accompanied by a large number of her cabinet members, also sang in unison the national anthem -- " Amar Sonar Bangla Ami Tomai Bhalobash (My Golden Bengal, I Love You).."
Organizers had earlier said the main objective of this event was not only to celebrate Bangladesh's Independence Day which falls on Wednesday but also to show the world the inner strength and unity of the people of the nation.
According to the organizers, previously in May 2013 an Indian organization had set a Guinness Book record by arranging the singing of the Indian national anthem by 121,653 people.
Bangladesh's Ministry of Cultural Affairs in collaboration with the Bangladesh Army and other government and non-government organizations arranged the event titled "Lakho Konthe Sonar Bangla (Sonar Bangla in tens of thousands of voices)."
After successful completion of the incredible event, the organizers said all the relevant documents and images will be sent to the Guinness World Record committee for validation.
Guinness-accredited representatives were present to oversee the event.
Tens of thousands of Bangladeshi volunteers in December last year formed the world's biggest national flag in a bid to breach Guinness World Record.

Monday, March 24, 2014

war crimes case against Motiur Rahman Nizami ended

The trial in the war crimes case against Jamaat-e-Islami incumbent chief Motiur Rahman Nizami ended on 24th march after rehearing of closing arguments by both the defence and the prosecution.
The three-member International Crimes Tribunal 1 headed by Justice M Enayetur Rahim heard the prosecution’s rebuttal on the defence arguments, the last stage of the trial proceedings, yesterday. The tribunal may pronounce the verdict any day.
Prosecutor Tureen Afroz sought capital punishment for Nizami; Mohammad Ali, the conducting prosecutor, said they had proved all the charges brought against Nizami and death penalty was the only punishment for such an accused.
Earlier, the two prosecutors and senior prosecutor Syed Haider Ali had placed closing arguments for three days.
Tureen yesterday answered to some questions on incitement raised by the defence. She told the tribunal that incitement had long been recognised as an independent offence in many countries including the UK.
Nizami is facing 16 war crimes charges for his alleged involvement in the crimes against humanity, genocide, rape and incitement, especially in Pabna and Dhaka, during the 1971 Liberation War.
On November 13 last year, the tribunal, then led by Justice ATM Fazle Kabir, kept the case waiting for the verdict.
It drew conclusion to the case against the backdrop of continuous failure of the defence to appear before the court. However, it also gave the defence an opportunity to place its argument.
Justice Kabir retired on December 31 before pronouncing the judgement. On February 24, Justice Enayetur was appointed as the new chairman of the tribunal. Following a defence petition which was also supported by prosecutor Mohammad Ali, the tribunal decided to hear afresh the closing arguments that began on March 10.
In their arguments over four days, the defence termed Nizami “innocent” and said he had not been involved with any crimes stated in the charge sheet.
Earlier, chief defence counsel Abdur Razzak placed legal arguments while this time Mizanul Islam and Tajul Islam did the job.
The defence said Nizami in his addresses had not directed to kill or destroy in whole or part any racial, religious, ethnic or national group that are components of genocide charge. Since he did not target any of those groups, it would not be genocide.
The defence admitted that Nizami was the chief of Islami Chhatra Sangha, the student body of Jamaat at that time, but also strongly claimed that the prosecution could not produce any evidence to prove that the accused was also the chief of al-Badr – the notorious group responsible for systematic abduction and killing of intellectuals at the fag end of the Liberation War.
Tribunal 1 earlier gave verdicts against Jamaat leader Delawar Hossain Sayedee, its former chief Ghulam Azam and BNP lawmaker Salauddin Quader Chowdhury.
It took the tribunal 30 days to deliver the verdict in Sayedee’s case after the closing arguments had been complete, two months in Ghulam Azam’s case and more than two months in the case against Salauddin Quader. 

Genocide 1971

“…… we were told to kill the hindus and Kafirs (non-believer in God). One day in June, we cordoned a village and were ordered to kill the Kafirs in that area. We found all the village women reciting from the Holy Quran, and the men holding special congregational prayers seeking God’s mercy. But they were unlucky. Our commanding officer ordered us not to waste any time.”
Confession of a Pakistani Soldier
It all started with Operation Searchlight, a planned military pacification carried out by the Pakistan Army started on 25 March, 1971 to curb the Bengali nationalist movement by taking control of the major cities on March 26, and then eliminating all opposition, political or military, within one month. Before the beginning of the operation, all foreign journalists were systematically deported from Bangladesh. The main phase of Operation Searchlight ended with the fall of the last major town in Bengali hands in mid May.

According to New York Times (3/28/71) 10,000 people were killed; New York Times (3/29/71) 5,000-7,000 people were killed in Dhaka; The Sydney Morning Herald (3/29/71) 10,000 – 100,000 were killed; New York Times (4/1/71) 35,000 were killed in Dhaka during operation searchlight.

The operation also began the 1971 Bangladesh atrocities. These systematic killings served only to enrage the Bengalis, which ultimately resulted in the secession of East Pakistan later in December, 1971. The international media and reference books in English have published casualty figures which vary greatly; 200,000–3,000,000 for Bangladesh as a whole.

There is only one word for this: Genocide.

Genocide in Bangladesh, 1971
The mass killings in Bangladesh (then East Pakistan) in 1971 vie with the annihilation of the Soviet POWs, the holocaust against the Jews, and the genocide in Rwanda as the most concentrated act of genocide in the twentieth century. In an attempt to crush forces seeking independence for East Pakistan, the West Pakistani military regime unleashed a systematic campaign of mass murder which aimed at killing millions of Bengalis, and likely succeeded in doing so.
In national elections held in December 1970, the Awami League won an overwhelming victory across Bengali territory. On February 22, 1971 the generals in West Pakistan took a decision to crush the Awami League and its supporters. It was recognized from the first that a campaign of genocide would be necessary to eradicate the threat: “Kill three million of them,” said President Yahya Khan at the February conference, “and the rest will eat out of our hands.” (Robert Payne,Massacre [1972], p. 50.) On March 25 the genocide was launched. The university in Dacca (Dhaka) was attacked and students exterminated in their hundreds. Death squads roamed the streets of Dacca, killing some 7,000 people in a single night. It was only the beginning. “Within a week, half the population of Dacca had fled, and at least 30,000 people had been killed. Chittagong, too, had lost half its population. All over East Pakistan people were taking flight, and it was estimated that in April some thirty million people [!] were wandering helplessly across East Pakistan to escape the grasp of the military.” (Payne, Massacre, p. 48.) Ten million refugees fled to India, overwhelming that country’s resources and spurring the eventual Indian military intervention. (The population of Bangladesh/East Pakistan at the outbreak of the genocide was about 75 million.)
The Guinness Book of Records lists the Bangladesh Genocide as one of the top 5 genocides in the 20th century.

The gendercide against Bengali men

The war against the Bengali population proceeded in classic gendercidal fashion. According to Anthony Mascarenhas:
There is no doubt whatsoever about the targets of the genocide. They were: (1) The Bengali militarymen of the East Bengal Regiment, the East Pakistan Rifles, police and para-military Ansars and Mujahids. (2) The Hindus — “We are only killing the men; the women and children go free. We are soldiers not cowards to kill them …” I was to hear in Comilla [site of a major military base] [Comments R.J. Rummel: "One would think that murdering an unarmed man was a heroic act" (Death By Government, p. 323)] (3) The Awami Leaguers — all office bearers and volunteers down to the lowest link in the chain of command. (4) The students — college and university boys and some of the more militant girls. (5) Bengali intellectuals such as professors and teachers whenever damned by the army as “militant.” (Anthony Mascarenhas, The Rape of Bangla Desh [Delhi: Vikas Publications, 1972(?)], pp. 116-17.)
Mascarenhas’s summary makes clear the linkages between gender and social class (the “intellectuals,” “professors,” “teachers,” “office bearers,” and — obviously — “militarymen” can all be expected to be overwhelmingly if not exclusively male, although in many cases their families died or fell victim to other atrocities alongside them). In this respect, the Bangladesh events can be classed as a combined gendercide and elitocide, with both strategies overwhelmingly targeting males for the most annihilatory excesses.
London, 6/13/71). The Sunday Times…..”The Government’s policy for East Bengal was spelled out to me in the Eastern Command headquarters at Dacca. It has three elements:
1. The Bengalis have proved themselves unreliable and must be ruled by West Pakistanis;
2. The Bengalis will have to be re-educated along proper Islamic lines. The – Islamization of the masses – this is the official jargon – is intended to eliminate secessionist tendencies and provide a strong religious bond with West Pakistan;
3. When the Hindus have been eliminated by death and fight, their property will be used as a golden carrot to win over the under privileged Muslim middle-class. This will provide the base for erecting administrative and political structures in the future.”

Bengali man and boys massacred by the West Pakistani regime.

Bengali man and boys massacred by the West Pakistani regime.Younger men and adolescent boys, of whatever social class, were equally targets. According to Rounaq Jahan, “All through the liberation war, able-bodied young men were suspected of being actual or potential freedom fighters. Thousands were arrested, tortured, and killed. Eventually cities and towns became bereft of young males who either took refuge in India or joined the liberation war.” Especially “during the first phase” of the genocide, he writes, “young able-bodied males were the victims of indiscriminate killings.” (“Genocide in Bangladesh,” in Totten et al.Century of Genocide, p. 298.) R.J. Rummel likewise writes that “the Pakistan army [sought] out those especially likely to join the resistance — young boys. Sweeps were conducted of young men who were never seen again. Bodies of youths would be found in fields, floating down rivers, or near army camps. As can be imagined, this terrorized all young men and their families within reach of the army. Most between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five began to flee from one village to another and toward India. Many of those reluctant to leave their homes were forced to flee by mothers and sisters concerned for their safety.” (Death By Government, p. 329.) Rummel describes (p. 323) a chilling gendercidal ritual, reminiscent of Nazi procedure towards Jewish males: “In what became province-wide acts of genocide, Hindus were sought out and killed on the spot. As a matter of course, soldiers would check males for the obligated circumcision among Moslems. If circumcised, they might live; if not, sure death.”
Robert Payne describes scenes of systematic mass slaughter around Dacca (Dhaka) that, while not explicitly “gendered” in his account, bear every hallmark of classic gender-selective roundups and gendercidal slaughters of non-combatant men:
Bengali intellectuals murdered and dumped at dockside in Dacca.In the dead region surrounding Dacca, the military authorities conducted experiments in mass extermination in places unlikely to be seen by journalists. At Hariharpara, a once thriving village on the banks of the Buriganga River near Dacca, they found the three elements necessary for killing people in large numbers: a prison in which to hold the victims, a place for executing the prisoners, and a method for disposing of the bodies. The prison was a large riverside warehouse, or godown, belonging to the Pakistan National Oil Company, the place of execution was the river edge, or the shallows near the shore, and the bodies were disposed of by the simple means of permitting them to float downstream. The killing took place night after night. Usually the prisoners were roped together and made to wade out into the river. They were in batches of six or eight, and in the light of a powerful electric arc lamp, they were easy targets, black against the silvery water. The executioners stood on the pier, shooting down at the compact bunches of prisoners wading in the water. There were screams in the hot night air, and then silence. The prisoners fell on their sides and their bodies lapped against the shore. Then a new bunch of prisoners was brought out, and the process was repeated. In the morning the village boatmen hauled the bodies into midstream and the ropes binding the bodies were cut so that each body drifted separately downstream. (Payne, Massacre [Macmillan, 1973], p. 55.)
Strikingly similar and equally hellish scenes are described in the case-studies ofgenocide in Armenia and the Nanjing Massacre of 1937.

How many died?

Bangladeshi authorities claim that 3 million people were killed, while the Hamoodur Rahman Commission, an official Pakistan Government investigation, put the figure as low as 26,000 civilian casualties. The fact is that the number of dead in Bangladesh in 1971 was almost certainly well into seven figures. It was one of the worst genocides of the World War II era, outstripping Rwanda (800,000 killed) and probably surpassing even Indonesia (1 million to 1.5 million killed in 1965-66).
As R.J. Rummel writes:
The human death toll over only 267 days was incredible. Just to give for five out of the eighteen districts some incomplete statistics published in Bangladesh newspapers or by an Inquiry Committee, the Pakistani army killed 100,000 Bengalis in Dacca, 150,000 in Khulna, 75,000 in Jessore, 95,000 in Comilla, and 100,000 in Chittagong. For eighteen districts the total is 1,247,000 killed. This was an incomplete toll, and to this day no one really knows the final toll. Some estimates of the democide [Rummel's "death by government"] are much lower — one is of 300,000 dead — but most range from 1 million to 3 million. … The Pakistani army and allied paramilitary groups killed about one out of every sixty-one people in Pakistan overall; one out of every twenty-five Bengalis, Hindus, and others in East Pakistan. If the rate of killing for all of Pakistan is annualized over the years the Yahya martial law regime was in power (March 1969 to December 1971), then this one regime was more lethal than that of the Soviet Union, China under the communists, or Japan under the military (even through World War II). (Rummel, Death By Government, p. 331.)
People regard that the best option is to regard “3 million” as not an absolute but an arbitrary number. The proportion of men versus women murdered is impossible to ascertain, but a speculation might be attempted. If we take the highest estimates for both women raped and Bengalis killed (400,000 and 3 million, respectively); if we accept that half as many women were killed as were raped; and if we double that number for murdered children of both sexes (total: 600,000), we are still left with a death-toll that is 80 percent adult male (2.4 million out of 3 million). Any such disproportion, which is almost certainly on the low side, would qualify Bangladesh as one of the worst gendercides against men in the last half-millennium.

Who was responsible?

“For month after month in all the regions of East Pakistan the massacres went on,” writes Robert Payne. “They were not the small casual killings of young officers who wanted to demonstrate their efficiency, but organized massacres conducted by sophisticated staff officers, who knew exactly what they were doing. Muslim soldiers, sent out to kill Muslim peasants, went about their work mechanically and efficiently, until killing defenseless people became a habit like smoking cigarettes or drinking wine. … Not since Hitler invaded Russia had there been so vast a massacre.” (Payne,Massacre, p. 29.)
There is no doubt that the mass killing in Bangladesh was among the most carefully and centrally planned of modern genocides. A cabal of five Pakistani generals orchestrated the events: President Yahya Khan, General Tikka Khan, chief of staff General Pirzada, security chief General Umar Khan, and intelligence chief General Akbar Khan. The U.S. government, long supportive of military rule in Pakistan, supplied some $3.8 million in military equipment to the dictatorship after the onset of the genocide, “and after a government spokesman told Congress that all shipments to Yahya Khan’s regime had ceased.” (Payne, Massacre, p. 102.)
hindu-racism.jpgThe genocide and gendercidal atrocities were also perpetrated by lower-ranking officers and ordinary soldiers. These “willing executioners” were fuelled by an abiding anti-Bengali racism, especially against the Hindu minority. “Bengalis were often compared with monkeys and chickens. Said Pakistan General Niazi, ‘It was a low lying land of low lying people.’ The Hindus among the Bengalis were as Jews to the Nazis: scum and vermin that [should] best be exterminated. As to the Moslem Bengalis, they were to live only on the sufferance of the soldiers: any infraction, any suspicion cast on them, any need for reprisal, could mean their death. And the soldiers were free to kill at will. The journalist Dan Coggin quoted one Punjabi captain as telling him, ‘We can kill anyone for anything. We are accountable to no one.’ This is the arrogance of Power.” (Rummel, Death By Government, p. 335.)

Eyewitness accounts

The atrocities of the razakars in killing the Bengalis equaled those of their Pakistani masters. An excerpt from an article written in the Azad, dated January 15, 1972, underscores the inhuman atrocities of the Pakistani troops and their associates, the razakar and al-Badr forces:
‘….The people of Narail can bear witness to the reign of terror, the inhuman atrocities, inflicted on them after (General) Yahya let loose his troops to do what they would. After March 25, many people fled Jessore in fear of their lives, and took refuge in Narail and its neighboring localities. Many of them were severely bashed by the soldiers of Yahya and lost their lives. Very few people ever returned. Bhayna is a flourishing village near Narail. Ali Akbar is a well-known figure there. On April 8, the Pakistani troops surrounded the village on the pretext that it was a sanctuary for freedom fighters. Just as fish are caught in a net so too were the people of this village all assembled, in an open field. Then everyone- men, women, and children–were all forced to line up. Young men between the ages of 25 and 30 were lined up separately. 45 people were shot to death on the spot. Three of Ali Akbar’s brothers were killed there. Ali Akbar was able to save himself by lying on the ground. But no one else of that group was as fortunate. Nadanor was the Killing field. Every day 20 to 30 people were taken there with their hands tied behind their backs, and killed. The dead bodies would be flung into the river. Apart from this, a slaughter house was also readied for Bengalis. Manik, Omar, and Ashraf were sent to Jessore Cantonment for training and then brought to this slaughter house. Every day they would slaughter 9 to 12 persons here. The rate per person was Taka ten. On one particular day, 45 persons were slaughtered here. From April 15 to December 10, the butchery continued. It is gathered that 2,723 people lost their lives here. People were brought here and bashed, then their ears were cut off, and their eyes gouged out. Finally they were slaughtered… : The Chairman of the Peace Committee was Moulana Solaiman. With Dr. Abul Hussain and Abdul Rashid Mukhtar, he assisted in the genocide. Omar would proudly say, “During the day I am Omar, at night I am Shimar( legendary executioner famous for extreme cruelty). Don’t you see my dagger? There are countless Kafirs (heretics) on it.”

Chuknagar: The largest genocide during the Bangladesh Liberation War in 1971

Chuknagar is a small business town located in the Dumuria Thana of Khulna district and very close to the India Bangladesh border. In 71 thousands of refugees gathered in Chuknagar to go to Kolkata. According to a conservative account around ten thousand people were in Chuknagar waiting to cross the border.
In the early morning of May 10, the fatal day around 10am two trucks carrying Paki troops arrived at Kautala (then known as Patkhola). The Pakis were not many in number, most possibly a platoon or so. As soon as the Paki trucks stopped, the Pakis alighted from the truck carrying light machine guns (LMGs) and semi automatic rifles and opened fire on the public. Within a few minutes a lively town turned into a city of death.
The accounts of the two hundred interviewees were same. They differed only in details. “There were piled up dead bodies. Dead Kids’ on dead mum’s laps. Wives hugging their beloved husbands to protect them from killer bullets. Dads’ hugging their daughters to shield them. Within a flash they all were just dead bodies. Blood streamed into the Bhadra river, it became a river of corps. A few hours later when the Paki bastards ran out of bullets, they killed the rest of the people with bayonet.”
Source: Muntassir Mamun, The Archive of Liberation War, Bangabandhu and Bangladesh Research Institute

Further Documents and facts

  • Statistics Of Pakistan’s Democide: Estimates, Calculations, And Sources – R. J. Rummel
  • Genocide 71
  • Massacre of Dhaka University students
  • Torture Cells
  • Killing Zones
  • Operation search light
  • Mass grave found in Bangladesh – Tribune India August, 1999
  • An Army Insider’s Honest Expose of Atrocities in East Pakistan Debacle
  • Unearthing the killing fields in Mirpur Dhaka for mass graves – evidence of genocide
  • Bangladesh War of Independence: West Pakistani Soldiers Kill Catholic Priests – Jerome D’Costa
  • Genocide Seminar on Bangladesh 2007: An unprecedented step by a US
    Bangladesh Genocide Study Group at Kean University
  • “..It is Mujib’s home district. Kill as many bastards as you can and make sure there is no Hindu left alive,” I was ordered. – Colonel Nadir Ali, retired Pakistan Army Officer , Punjabi poet and short story writer


    According to Gregory H. Stanton, President, Genocide Watch there are eight stagesof a genocide. All of them are evident in the genocide commited by the Pakistan forces. The last of the eight stages is denial:
    It is among the surest indicators of further genocidal massacres. The perpetrators of genocide dig up the mass graves, burn the bodies, try to cover up the evidence and intimidate the witnesses. They deny that they committed any crimes, and often blame what happened on the victims.


  • The Mathematics of a Genocide – Abul Kasem
  • 269,000 people died in Bangladesh war, says new study
  • Nights and Days of Pakistani Butchers – Abul Kasem
  • Remembering 25th March: The Darkest Night – Dr. Ajoy Roy
  • Violation of Human Rights and Genocide in Bangladesh -M. Maniruzzaman Mia
  • Tale of an abandoned monument: Madhuri Lata still whimpers for her martyred husband and relatives
  • Never again? Genocide since 1945 – Scott Lamb
  • Century of Genocide: Critical Essays and Eyewitness Accounts: Chapter 9: Genocide in Bangladesh – Rounaq Jahan.
  • Sen. Edward Kennedy on the Hindu Genocide in East Bengal ’71
  • The Legacy of the plight of Hindus in Bangladesh- Rabindranath Trivedi
  • Genocide 1971: What does the world know about it? – Dr. Mohammad Omar Farooq
  • genocide.jpg


    * Genocide images 123 (Viewers discretion advised)

    Tuesday, March 4, 2014

    Subir Bhaumik -Why is Bollywood so insensitive?

    March 2, 2014 

    Bollywood has big budgets, latest technology and an appeal across the world that would make any competitor envious. What it lacks is imagination and so often it fails to get its history right. The faux pas over ‘Gunday’ brings this into sharp focus. How could its makers get 1971 so horribly wrong! Is it just sloppy oversight, poor research and lack of historical perspective — or some kind of a ‘know-all attitude’ that permeates the entertainment czars who rule the tinsel town in the Indian financial-entertainment hub?

    In late 2011, I had lunch with a top Bollywood producer, one who had started to produce films after having made his millions as an actor. He was out on a tour of India’s many regions to promote his latest hit. Having heard him out on his latest film, I made him an offer. I said there is a great plot waiting to be done into a war film because Bollywood has so few of them and those that are there are hardly worth talking about. He admitted Bollywood’s failure to produce great war films, despite the many wars India has fought after independence.

    That is when I told him about ‘Operation Jackpot’, one of the best-coordinated naval commando operations in the history of warfare. If properly done, this could be Bollywood’s Guns of Navronne, I reasoned with the producer. I told him with some pride that the men who pulled off ‘Ops Jackpot’ were not the usual big moustache martial races of the sub-continent, but diminutive rice-eating Bengalis who blew up all available shipping on several East Pakistan ports within a span of few hours and left the harbours clogged to the nightmare of the beleaguered Pakistani commanders in 1971.

    Just after I had finished, he chipped in — “But this is a Bangladesh story, how will I sell it to an Indian audience”. I had to remind the producer that 1971 was a Bangladesh story as well as an Indian story because the war was fought together. He appeared less than convinced even after I had told him that Indian naval officers were involved in the planning of the operation, though it was the brave Bengalis who executed it. He asked me for some preliminary research material on ‘Ops Jackpot’ which I agreed to provide. But it really did not take off and the producer never got back to me. I have not named him because I want no controversy and would keep looking for someone to do possible film on ‘Ops Jackpot’. But if the pre-condition of a Bollywood producer to do the film is to find an Indian angle to launch an Indian Rambo into the choppy waters of East Pakistan, I am afraid I am not game. Simply because though Indian officials were involved in planning ‘Ops Jackpot’, the action on ground did not involve them.

    A few months ago, I had a long chat on this issue with my good friend Aravind Adiga, whose debut novel, White Tiger, won the 2008 Man Booker prize. He was in Kolkata, researching 1971 and we talked about the war, which I had seen at close quarters as a schoolboy in my hometown Agartala. Aravind has been a colleague at Time magazine and we have known each other for years. He lives in Bombay (I prefer that to Mumbai) and has many big-time contacts in Bollywood. He promised to pass on my idea to those who may possibly be interested to turn it into a film.

    But what haunts me is that question, which others interested in the plot may also ask — where is the Indian angle to the story? How do we sell it to an Indian audience, how do we appeal to the huge Indian market? I have a ready answer — for all practical purposes, it was a war we fought together, so 1971 is both a Bangladesh story and an Indian story but a story we made together and not — I repeat not — made in isolation. For the Bengalis who sacrificed so much for independence, it was a dream come true. For India, and surely its military, this was its finest hour. But if any film is made or book is written on 1971, it has to have in fair measure both sides of the story — the Bangladesh side and the Indian side.

    I strongly suspect that the makers of ‘Gunday’ have messed up in their eagerness to make a film for an Indian audience and have ended up projecting 1971 as an India-Pakistan war. That also betrays the classic Indian obsession with Pakistan — as if it is the one neighbour we have. Ignorance should foster humility but sometimes it promotes arrogance, especially in Bollywood, with all its wealth, power and reach. So the makers of ‘Gunday’ should not try to get away with a joke of an apology, saying they did not intend to hurt anybody’s sentiment. Very often, sentiments of a people and a nation are hurt inadvertently by foreigners who are ignorant and unwilling to double-check.

    Bollywood films have huge budgets — surely some of it could be spared for research. Any researcher who knows 1971 — including many important Indians who played a role in it and are still alive — would tell the makers of ‘Gunday’ to get enough of the eight months of Bengali suffering and heroism into the film before it turns into an Indian story.

    I have said this before and would say it again that Bollywood is one of the key elements of India’s soft power. From Russia to Egypt, from Japan to Africa, audiences swing to its song-and-dance extravaganzas. That is precisely why it is so important that governments in Delhi must be extra careful with what Bollywood does. The Censors must be more sensitive to episodes that could hurt sentiments in the neighbourhood and they surely need to impress on filmmakers to get their history right. 1971 was a great moment for both India and Bangladesh. We don’t want a ‘Gunday’ to spoil that wonderful ‘bliss-was-it-in-that-dawn-to-be-alive’ memory.