Vol. 5 Num 630 Tue. March 07, 2006  

Asghar's demand for trial
A Pakistani speaks his mind
Air Marshal (retired) M Asghar Khan, a veteran Pakistani politician, has said that the Pakistan government should try the perpetrators of the genocide in Bangladesh in 1971. No moral indictment on the genocide by any Pakistani has ever been more forceful and candid.

An eminent Pakistani has echoed the voice of conscience that demands that the perpetrators of the heinous act do not go unpunished. And, bringing them to justice cannot have a time-bar.

As one who witnessed firsthand the unfolding events of 1971, Asghar has spoken his mind at the launching ceremony of his book in Dhaka that must find a responsive chord in contemporary Pakistan. It is imperative that the witnesses to 1971 gave a true account of what happened during that time. We believe though that a growing segment of the intelligentsia in Pakistan subscribes to the views expressed by Asghar. And his comments should help those fed on a diet of disinformation campaign some three decades ago to have a fresh look at the events of 1971 and demand justice. The true picture of atrocities committed on the people of erstwhile East Pakistan was shut out to the common man in the then western wing.

As a moderate and rational political leader, Asghar has a reputation of his own. He has also been critical of the use of religion in politics, which is a burning issue today.

We welcome his view that facts are facts and these must be faced. Are the contemporary leaders in Pakistan listening?