The Daily Star

Your Right To Know
Sunday, February 14, 2016

Monday, March 2, 2009
Front Page

Most officers killed by 11 in the morning

Says Lt Colonel Shams

Most of the BDR Jawaans who killed the army officers during the BDR mutiny were quite young and most of the killings were carried out and over between 10:30 to 11:00 am, immediately after the chaos started at Darbar Hall at the BDR headquarters.

This eyewitness account of that fateful day came from a survivor officer, Lt. Colonel Shams, commander of Battalion-44, as he recounted what he saw in an interview published in several newspapers.

Lt Col Shams said when the Director General of BDR Shakil Ahmed was delivering his speech at the Darbar, a Jawan aimed an SMG rifle at the DG and he (Lt Col Shams) jumped up and pushed this man over, who was visibly unable to fire and was trembling as he approached the DG.

As a chaos ensued, the army officers were sent out to calm down the Jawaans who had left the hall. Once outside, Lt Col Shams noticed a group of young Jawans, all firing their guns approaching the Darbar Hall from gate number 5.

During the mayhem that followed, some BDR JCO from battalion 44, including Subeder Saiful, Siraj and Ismail, told Shams that the situation was out of control and helped him escape the scene, taking him to their quarters at Al Beruni Bhaban.

As he was escaping, Lt Col Shams saw a grey-coloured pick-up approaching the Darbar Hall from the gate number 5, apparently loaded with boxes of ammunition.

Shams said that he had never seen such a pickup used in either the BDR or the army. By the time he had reached Al Beruni Bhaban, he could hear the sound of firing at the Darbar hall.

"It was between 10:30 am to 11:00 am and I assume most of the officers were killed during that time," he said in the interview.

"The Jawans took me to their house and told me that my life would be in no danger as long as they were alive. They took off my badge and uniform and gave me clothes to wear. I hid in that house for the next two days,' the Lt Col said.

"Whenever any rebelling Jawans came near the house to search, I would hide in the floor compartment of a box bed," Shams said expressing his gratitude to those who saved his life at such a time.

During the evening of February 25, Shams said he saw cleaners going into the Darbar Hall with cloths and he also recalls seeing ambulances going there and he realised that these people were going to clean up the place and remove the bodies of the officers killed.

Though the rebels had at the beginning announced over microphones that they had enough ammunition to continue to fight for six months, the next morning (Thursday) they began to call on all not to misuse the bullets.

Lt Col Shams said that the situation inside the BDR headquarters seemed to calm down on February 26 following the prime minister's speech that was aired on television.

"The prime minister's speech worked like a wonder. The tension seemed to ease. Groups of Jawans started surrendering arms following the speech," the Lt Col said in the interview.

Shams said that most of the Jawans appeared gloomy to him, following the prime minister's speech.

Shams also saw many Jawans fleeing the BDR headquarters in civil clothes on the second day of the mutiny.

Share on


When it is heard about such a situation described by the people who witnessed it that BDR who did and tried to do that were non-human, who have no hearts at all. They not only killed their own brother solders but also killed other innocent people. The point is that if they had any disadvantage or other problems regarding salary dissatisfaction and looked after by Army, they should have done something in peacefully without opening fire, using alms. Therefore, it is not needed to be an intelligent person to sit and think quietly out the casue of such problems.

: Shuva Bikash

My question is, what happened to the cell phones people were carrying. Why couldn't someone within BDR call outside and inform them of the blood bath that was being conducted within BDR? How can it be that the PM knew nothing about it when she was negotiating peace treaty with the BDR jawan? Also, what happened to the Secret intelligence? They had no prior information? These are grey areas that leaves me completely baffled!

: Farhana Ahmed


  • Kawser Ahmed
    Monday, March 2, 2009 03:13 AM GMT+06:00 (363 weeks ago)

    It is absolutely disgraceful incident after Independence of Bangladesh. Home Minister Advocate Sahara Khatun and LGRD Assistant Minister should resign with immediate impact. They were absolutely hopeless to solve that crisis and fail to save those lives. They should leave their office.

  • Asafur Khan
    Monday, March 2, 2009 07:52 AM GMT+06:00 (363 weeks ago)

    Nice story. This gives us a sort of first-hand experience of the massacre.

  • Chandra Mani Chakma
    Monday, March 2, 2009 08:11 AM GMT+06:00 (363 weeks ago)

    This is a big loss in us. This should be appropriated investigation so that the real criminal come out and give them punishment.





The Daily Star

©, 1991-2016. All Rights Reserved