Despite a long-standing demand from people of all strata to form an independent commission to unmask the behind-the-scene perpetrators of the August 15 carnage, the Awami League-led government is yet to take any move to this end.
Party bigwigs and some ministers have been hinting at constituting the commission for the last one decade of the Awami League rule, but there is still no notable progress to look into who are the masterminds behind the assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and most of his family members.
Law Minister Anisul Huq said that they could not outline the plan of forming the commission due to the ongoing surge in coronavirus cases.
“We couldn’t hold any discussion about constituting the commission as we have to give attention to the Covid-19 situation. Even, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is paying attention to the corona situation,” he said.
“As soon as the pandemic is over, we’ll outline the framework of the commission,” Anisul further said.
Sources in the government say there has been no discussion in the government over the activities of the commission or how it will work or who will lead the body.
Every year, the demand gets louder when the mourning month of August comes but the issue of forming the commission gets obsolete till next August.
All the convicted killers of Bangabandhu could not be executed as five of the killers remain absconding and the government does not know the whereabouts of three of them.
It has been almost 12 years since the Supreme Court paved the way for the execution of 12 convicted former disgruntled Army officers for the assassination of Bangabandhu and most of his family on August 15, 1995.
But, the verdict is yet to be fully implemented as it has not been possible to bring back the five fugitive killers.
Six killers -- Syed Farooq Rahman, Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Bazlul Huda, AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed, Mohiuddin Ahmed and Abdul Majed – have already been hanged.
Majed, who used to live in Kolkata of India, was the last one to be executed on April 12 last year.
Another convict, Aziz Pasha, met a natural death in Zimbabwe in 2001.
Of the remaining fugitives, Rashed Chowdhury is in the US and Noor Chowdhury in Canada. The whereabouts of Khandaker Abdur Rashid, Shariful Haque Dalim and Moslehuddin Khan remain unknown.
Noting that the perpetrators of the August 15 carnage are still active, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader said the direct killers were brought to trial and the verdict awarding death sentences to them has been executed but, investigation should be done to unmask the behind-the-scene perpetrators of the August 15 carnage before the new generation.
After the August 15 carnage, Bangladesh Nationalist Party founder Ziaur Rahman usurped the state power and awarded the killers through jobs at Bangladeshi missions abroad.
An indemnity ordinance was also promulgated during Zia’s regime to block the trial of the Bangabandhu killers.
Ruling AL has been holding the BNP founder responsible for the killing while BNP has been denying it.
At a recent programme, Information and Broadcasting Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud demanded that a commission should be constituted to unmask the masterminds behind the assassination of Bangabandhu to let the future generation know history.
“Or else, the next generation won’t know the real history,” said Hasan, also Awami League joint general secretary.
Editor & Publisher : Md. Motiur Rahman
Pritam-Zaman Tower, Level 03, Suite No: 401/A, 37/2 Bir Protik Gazi Dastagir Road, Purana Palton, Dhaka-1000
Cell : (+88) 01706 666 716, (+88) 01711 145 898, Phone: +88 02-41051180-81