The International Crimes Tribunal-1 will pass an order on Tuesday upon the plea seeking bail filed by detained war crimes accused nayeb-e-ameer of Jamaat-e-Islami AKM Yusuf, founder of notorious Razakar outfit during the Liberation War.
Hearing arguments from both the defence and the prosecution lawyers on Monday, the three-member tribunal, headed by Justice ATM Fazle Kabir, fixed the date.
Accused Yusuf, now 87, the second man in the hierarchy of Jamaat leadership, was arrested from his Dhanmondi residence on Monday, hours after the tribunal issued a warrant for his arrest after taking cognisance of his offence of the 1971 war crimes submitted by the prosecution.
As the police in compliance with the tribunal’s order, produced the accused before it in the afternoon, the defence counsel submitted a petition seeking bail for the accused.
The tribunal, however, kept pending the bail plea for hearing today (Tuesday) asking the police to detain the accused in Dhaka Central Jail.
Moving the bail plea, defence counsel Barrister Abdur Razzaq sought bail for his client on health ground as he is suffering from geriatric complications.
Before placing arguments for the bail, Barrister Razzaq alleged that police held the Jamaat leader before reaching the warrant of arrest which amounts to abuse of power.
Meanwhile, the prosecution vehemently opposed the bail plea. They told the tribunal that mere bad health of an accused cannot be a cogent ground for bail as the accused holds a top position of a political party and faces the offences like genocide and religious conversion. The accused gets medical facilities inside the jail and outside also on advice of the doctor, said the prosecution lawyers.
The prosecution lawyers further said, “If the accused gets bail, there’s an apprehension of tampering with the evidence against him since the accused is an influential man.”
About the defence allegation of abusing power exercised by the police over the arrest of the accused, prosecutor Syed Haider Ali told the tribunal that police had acted in accordance with the law.
There is no provision under any rule that police must show the warrant of arrest to the accused before taking him into custody, he argued.
Referring to section 34 (1) of the ICT rules of procedure, Syed Haider said,” The police shall produce the arrested accused direct before the tribunal within 24 hours of arrest.”
The Jamaat leader faces 15 counts of charges, including genocide, killing, loot, arson, deportation of people and religious conversion.
The charges fall under 3(2), 4 (1) and 4 (2) of the updated International Crimes (Tribunals) Act 1973.
According to the prosecution, accused Yusuf, a member of the Malek Cabinet, a rubberstamp government backed by the Pakistan junta, had formed for the first time in Khulna in 1971 the vigilante group Razakar, derived from the members of Jamaat-e-Islami that acted as an auxiliary force of the Pakistan occupation army to actively thwart the Bangladesh liberation forces.
Source: UNB Connect