A top fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami leader was on Tuesday charged by a special Bangladeshi court with war crimes during the country’s 1971 liberation war against Pakistan.
Abdus Subhan, in his 70s, has been accused of “murder, genocide, loot, abduction, confinement, arson and torture.”
According to charges, Subhan committed the atrocities at different parts of his northwestern home district in Pabna from April 17 to October 30, 1971.
“The charges are framed,” International Crimes Tribunal chairman Justice ATM Fazle Kabir said, indicting Subhan of nine counts as he appeared on the dock and set January 28 as the date of hearing.
Subhan, however, pleaded “not guilty”.
He was arrested in September last year and his indictment came nearly three weeks after Bangladesh executed fellow party leader Abdul Quader Mollah on identical charges.
The two special tribunals so far charged over a dozen of people with war crimes, mostly leaders of Jamaat which was opposed to Bangladesh’s independence.
Until now the tribunals delivered verdicts in nine cases handing down capital punishment to six but other than Mollah no one was executed as subsequent appeal before the Supreme Court or other legal procedures were underway.