Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen today (11 September 2020) urged all Bangladeshis at home and abroad to conduct a signature campaign in demand for bringing back fugitive convicted killers of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
“If we can have lakhs or one core of signatures on the demand … we can mount pressure to those countries (where the killers are now residing) for bringing them (killers) back,” he said.
The foreign minister was speaking at a discussion on Bangabandhu, organized by Janatar Prottasha with its chairman M A Karim in the chair at the Jatiya Press Club in the capital.
The government had traced out Bangabandhu’s two convicted furtive killers — Rashed Chowdhury and Noor Chowdhury — residing in the USA and Canada respectively, while the whereabouts of other three fugitives –Khandaker Abdur Rashid, Shariful Haque Dalim, and Moslehuddin Khan — are yet to be ascertained.
After knowing the locations of the two killers, the Foreign Ministry and the Law Ministry have been deeply engaged with the US and the Canadian authorities to bring back these two absconding murderers.
The foreign minister expressed his hope of bringing back at least Rashed Chowdhury from the USA to the country within the ‘Mujib Year’, marking the birth centenary of the founding father of Bangladesh.
“He (Rashed Chowdhury) had provided false information to the USA authority and now his immigration case is being reviewed there,” he said.
About Noor Chowdhury, the foreign minister said Bangladesh had filed a case in Canadian court and won that. “But, still he (Noor) is there showing some Canadian legal ground,” he added.
Momen said the signature campaign by Bangladeshis, including the expatriates living in Canada, would help bring back Noor Chowdhury.
He called upon the Bangladeshi expatriates in Canada to mount pressure on the Canadian authority by telling them “Canada can’t be a hub of murderers … a murderer can’t live free in Canada”.
Momen said Dhaka has sought cooperation from all the countries across the world to detect the rest three fugitive convicted killers and send them here to help Bangladesh in establishing the rule of law.
Momen said the foreign ministry gave special instructions to all Bangladesh missions abroad to hunt for the killers.
He said three ministries- foreign, law and home affairs – have been working in this regard. “The government is putting in all sort of efforts to bring them back, but now we also need help from our people at home and abroad in this regard” he added.
He urged the Bangladeshi expatriates to be vigilant along with Bangladesh missions abroad to identify the other three fugitive killers of Bangabandhu enabling the government to bring them back as well.
“I call upon our expatriate brothers as well as countrymen to give us information about them (fugitive killers) so that we can wipe off our stigma,” he said.
Momen also urged Bangladeshis expatriates to hold demonstrations in front of the residences of the identified fugitive killers in their respective countries to let their neighbors know that a murderer is living beside them.
“We want to implement the court verdicts of the Bangabandhu murder trial to ensure justice, rule of law, and good governance in the country,” Momen said.
Majed was on the run for nearly two-and-a-half decades to evade justice and after his arrest, Momen said, adding that he (Majed) had been hiding in India’s West Bengal for the past 23 years and returned to Bangladesh in March this year.
“It was a satisfaction that we had already been able to execute at least one of the fugitive killers — Majed — in this Mujib Year,” Momen said.
Twelve ex-military officers were sentenced to death for the 15 August 1975 killing of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman along with most of his family members.
Of them, five sacked army personnel – Syed Farooq Rahman, Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed, Mohiuddin Ahmed and Bazlul Huda – were hanged at Dhaka Central Jail on 28 January 2010, while another convict, sacked colonel Rashed Pasha, died a natural death in Zimbabwe when he was on the run.
Farooq Rahman, Shahriar Rashid Khan, Mohiuddin Ahmed of artillery faced the trials in the judge court while Huda was extradited from Thailand and Mohiuddin was sent back from the United States after the then district judge Golam Rasul delivered the judgment.