Bangladesh hanged two top opposition leaders Sunday for alleged war crimes committed during 1971 conflict with Pakistan. Authorities then boosted security across the country over fears of unrest. Opposition parties called for strike to protest against the executions of Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mujahid and Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury. Bangladesh has been roiled by violence for much of the last three years since a domestic tribunal began delivering its verdicts on opposition figures. A total of 18 people have been convicted but only two had been sent to the gallows before Mujahid and Chowdhury were hanged at Dhaka’s Central Prison. While the other three were members of the largest Islamist party, Jamaat-e-Islami, Chowdhury was a senior figure in the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP).
Pakistan on Sunday expressed deep concerns at the executions of two opposition leaders. Spokes person of Foreign Ministry said, “We have noted with deep concern and anguish the unfortunate executions of the Bangladesh National Party Leader, Salauddin Quadir Chowdhury and Ali Ahsan Mojaheed. Pakistan is deeply disturbed at this development,”
There is a need for reconciliation in Bangladesh in accordance with the spirit of Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh Agreement of 9th April 1974. The Agreement calls for a forward looking approach in matters relating to 1971. This would foster goodwill and harmony.
Bangladesh regime, whose own legitimacy is in question as it came to power after an election boycotted by the opposition, was now resorting to politics of vengeance, vendetta and victimisation simply to stay on in power. By these hangings, the Bangladesh regime has hung the future of Bangladesh in the balance, as it will provoke polarisation and promote politics of confrontation. International Human Rights organizations need to come forward to influence Bangladesh to stop judicial murders.
With judicial murders the whole concept of justice and rule of law in Bangladesh too have been buried.