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Thursday, January 28, 2010
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5 Bangabandhu killers hanged

Govt goes for execution 14 hours after review petition rejected; bodies sent to their village homes with police escort

Clockwise: Syed Farooq Rahman, Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Bazlul Huda, AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed and Mohiuddin Ahmed

Five condemned killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman were hanged early today at Dhaka Central Jail amid tight security.

The death sentences of the five were executed around 14 and a half hours after the Appellate Division dismissed their pleas to review the Supreme Court verdict that confirmed capital punishment to 12 former army officers including the five petitioners on November 19 last year.

The dismissal paved the way for executing the five killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and most of his family members any time within January 31.

"Sultan Shahriar Rashid and Syed Farooq Rahman were the first to walk the gallows at 12:05am. They were handcuffed and their heads were covered in black hoods in the final minutes to midnight," Dhaka Deputy Commissioner Zillar Rahman told The Daily Star soon after he walked out of the jail premises around 1:45am.

Two hangmen put two nooses around the necks of the two condemned killers. Two other hangmen--Hafiz and Shahjahan--were ready to pull levers to slide apart the scaffolds.

It was 12:05am. Dhaka Jail Superintendent Touhidul Islam dropped a handkerchief from his hand to give signal to the hangmen. The two chief hangmen pulled the levers.

Sultan Shahriar and Farooq were kept hanging for half an hour to confirm their death, witnesses said.

At 12:35am, two other killers of Bangabandhu--AKM Mohiuddin and Bazlul Huda--were brought to the gallows. They were also executed in a similar fashion.

Then it was the turn for Mohiuddin Ahmed. He was brought to a gallows at 1:05am and was hanged following all rituals.

The authorities had taken up a three-layer security measure for the execution.

Members of Rapid Action Battalion, police and armed police battalion were deployed around Dhaka Central Jail. Vehicular movement was restricted on the road in front of the jail gate.

Besides, law enforcement and intelligence agencies were kept alert across the country to avert any untoward incident.

As the news spread earlier that the five convicts would be executed, several hundred people started gathering at the jail gate in the evening, reported our staff correspondents Rashidul Hasan and Shaheen Mollah. A lot of people brought out processions in different parts of the capital including Bangabandhu's residence in Dhanmondi and Dhaka University campus.

Civil Surgeon Mushfiqur Rahman, Inspector General (Prisons) Ashraful Islam Khan, Deputy Commissioner Zillar Rahman, four magistrates led by the Dhaka district additional deputy commissioner, Home Secretary Abdus Sobhan Sikder and Dhaka Metropolitan Police Commissioner AKM Shahidul Hoque arrived at the jail after 10:00pm yesterday.

Jail sources said they bathed the convicts around 11:00am. Around half an hour later the civil surgeon and two other doctors conducted medical check-ups of the convicts.

Earlier, the two gallows beside the condemned cells in the jail were prepared for the execution.

The compound was lit with floodlights around 11:00pm last night.

The bodies of the five were sent to their village homes by five ambulances by 3:30am under police and Rab escort after conducting post mortem, said Jail Superintendent Touhidul Islam.

People were seen throwing shoes at an ambulance carrying one of the dead bodies.

The five hangmen who performed the execution are Hafiz, Mohammad Shahjahan, Faruq, Raju and Sanwar.

Earlier yesterday, following the dismissal of his review petition, convict Syed Farooq Rahman in the afternoon appealed to the president for clemency, which President Zillur Rahman rejected.

Dhaka Jail Superintendent Touhidul Islam last night confirmed The Daily Star that they received the president's rejection order.

The Appellate Division rejected the review petitions as they contained no new arguments and any legal grounds for reviewing the Supreme Court judgment confirming the death sentences.

In all the petitions, the counsel of the convicts reiterated points that had already been argued during the hearing of their appeals against the High Court verdict. The HC had rejected those pleas.

The four-member bench of the Appellate Division headed by Chief Justice Md Tafazzul Islam pronounced the order yesterday morning.

The other members of the Appellate Division bench were justices BK Das, Md Muzammel Hossain and SK Sinha. They heard arguments on the review petitions for three days from January 24.

Killers Syed Farooq Rahman, Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Mohiuddin Ahmed, Bazlul Huda and AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed, who were in condemned cells of Dhaka Central Jail, had filed the review petitions with the Supreme Court against its verdict.

Law Minister Shafique Ahmed told reporters that as per jail code, the jail authorities should execute the convicts between the 21st and 28th days after the trial court issued death warrants against them.

The death warrants were issued on January 3 and the countdown started the same day, Shafique said, adding that this means the last date for execution is January 31.

Earlier in the day, the law minister held a meeting at his office with Home Minister Sahara Khatun, State Minister for Law Quamrul Islam, Chief State Counsel Anisul Huq, Attorney General Mahbubey Alam, Additional Law Secretary Anwarul Haque, Home Secretary Abdus Sobhan Sikder, Inspector General of Prisons Brig Gen Ashraful Islam Khan and Dhaka Jail Superintendent Touhidul Islam.

The meeting was held to decide the next course of action following the passage of the SC orders.

On November 19 last year, the Supreme Court awarded death penalty to 12 convicts. Apart from the five executed today, six are on the run and one died.

In an instant reaction to the dismissal of the review petitions, Chief State Counsel Anisul Huq and Attorney General Mahbubey Alam told reporters that they are happy with the apex court's order as they got justice in the case.

"Our fight was for establishing the rule of law and justice, not envy, and we got justice," Anisul Huq said.

Mahbubey Alam said the trial proceeding of one of the most heinous killings in history came to an end with the dismissal of the review petitions.

Barrister Abdullah-Al Mamun, lawyer for two convicts, told The Daily Star that they accepted the SC orders although they were disappointed with the dismissal of the review petitions.

Mamun urged the prime minister to show mercy to the convicts as a gesture of kindness.

Convict Farooq Rahman sought presidential clemency through the jail authority.

The jail authorities forwarded the petition to the law ministry through the home ministry for legal opinion, a law ministry official told The Daily Star. But the law ministry subsequently opined against presidential mercy to Farooq.

The law ministry sent back the petition to the home ministry, saying although it is the president's prerogative to grant mercy, it would not be judicious to pardon the condemned convicts of Bangabandhu murder case.

Three other condemned former army officers--Mohiuddin Ahmed, AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed and Bazlul Huda--earlier sought mercy from the president, which the president rejected on January 18.

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I am so Happy today. Also my family.

: Tareq

As a son of the soil of Bangladesh, I feel better now. The nation has been freed from a curse and the rule of law has been upheld. We need to punish those who supported and rewarded these killers.

: Moinak Islam


  • T. Husain
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 12:26 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    why the media need to publish it in minute detail? What pleasure the readers get out of it? The killers committed their crimes to utter revulsion of any sober human soul and the custodian of justice meticulously offering them punishment on the same scale, on tit for tat basis but adding due flavour and publicity.

  • faqrul
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 02:26 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    The nation is relieved from suspense defered justice. The judges are brave and our hero- right from the session judge to appelate court to review bench. The lawyers, both sides, played their part as expected. The law and justice have finally been prevailed.

    One request to our media, please do not mislead the people with baseless comments, jucy tit bit.Let the nation be united on this single issue of justice done to the nation and to the families of the late founding father of Bangladesh.

  • Sawgat Chowdhury
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 02:37 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Justice served only for 1975 killings, we also want justice for killing 3 million people in 1971.

  • nurul amin
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 02:41 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Free at last, from the national shame

  • Thursday, January 28, 2010 02:59 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    At last! The Bangladeshi has got immense emancipation of most ignominy period by this exemplary justice.

    Power does make a good moral sense but extreme power can make a person too corrupted and bad conducts.

    Some officers liked to walk this bad way and later power covetous sentiment became a nuisance for them but finally they have gave their outcome for that sin.

  • Mahfuz Chisti
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 03:21 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Justice at last. It has proved after long 35 yrs, no one is above law and can escape law. I feel sorry for the family but these killers even didn`t show any mercy to innocent child and pregnant women. They were lucky to live so long.

  • Ahmed
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 04:33 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    It is about time the country redeem herself of the crime against the founding father. Now let there be a worldwide search by those who love this country for the 6 who are on run! Let us start a new day in Bangladesh!

  • baz
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 04:50 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Good job done at last. 6 on the run: Khandaker Abdur Rashid, Shariful Haque Dalim, Nur Chowdhury, Rashed Chowdhury, Abdul Mazed and Moslehuddin Khan are having diarrhea having this information. They should consider suicides as Taliban bombers. Our govt should look for them with lantern in hands.


  • Gopal Sengupta,Canada
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 05:54 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    I glance at the headlines just to kind of get a flavor for what's moving after the review petitions were rejected the Supreme Court. I rarely read the stories, and get briefed by those killers who have made the news by themselves.

  • Shah Sazzad
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 06:42 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    It is never too late if justice can prevail.

  • A Bangladeshi
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 07:37 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Great! Let there be justice in our land. Criminals should not be spared and must be brought to justice even after 1000 years.

  • dewan
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 07:44 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    No criminals like them will never able to skip from the justice, they should have died not by hanged they should have died by long lasting pain.

  • ismail hossain badol
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 08:10 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)


  • sharif shafiq
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 08:23 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    As a Bangladeshi, I can say we are now free from imprecation.Thanks to all of justices and lawyers who are involved this case and perfectly solve this greatest murdered case.

  • Fabian Ouchterlony
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 10:15 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    The Death penalty is always wrong. Capital punishment should not exist in a civilized society.

    Of Western countries only the U.S.A. still practices the death penalty, and undoubtedly only for religious reasons. If you are religious and believe that God is Love, why do you kill ? Only God is without sin and we are all sinners.

  • limon
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 10:19 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Alhamdulillah. I am very happy.

  • shaheen hasnat
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 10:24 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    At last justice is being served to our nation. Now the govt. should make sure the deceased families get proper respect and place in the society. Lest not forget that their families are innocents and under no circumstances they should have any bad influence by anyone.

    May Allah protect our nation.

  • Thursday, January 28, 2010 10:25 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Ban the Death Penalty in Bangladesh. This is a medieval punishment that does not belong in the 21st Century.

  • Antik
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 11:13 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Bravo Bangladesh! After all the heinous traitors have received what they deserved by killing a person who could have made this new nation a prosperous one long ago.

  • Anwar Hossain
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 12:24 PM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    The nation was waiting for this day for 35 years.

  • Ridwan
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 12:40 PM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Capital punishmnent is yet inhuman, must not be continued

  • Mahfzu
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 11:42 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    I feel very annoyed by seeing various TV channel activities. Whatever the killers had did, but same time they also human and they have also familly. They should be hanged, its allright but why need live telecast, such as full description of hanging. This activity not goes as human activity.

  • Abdul Alim Munshi
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 11:44 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    This is an indication. Let's ensure justice for everyone and every bereaved family. I still hear the voices crying for justice.

  • Haq
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 03:15 PM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    There are some talks about discontinuing with capital punishment. Can Bangladesh afford this? If these convicted murderers were given life imprisonment, there remained a probability of pardoning them by a subsequent regime. We also remember that they gloated after committing the heinous crime in the front of the world & local media.

  • Gopal
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 11:02 AM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    The Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was an iconic nation builder and role model for all in South Asia.

    His barbaric killing with impunity is at last met with the justice it deserved. Unless there is rule of law and punishment for murder, such violent and anti democratic acts would continue.

  • Dipalok Mukherjee
    Thursday, January 28, 2010 01:54 PM GMT+06:00 (315 weeks ago)

    Feels like a burden has been removed! Now lets hope that justice will be served by awarding punishment to the rajakars.





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