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Bangladesh seeks India's help to nab Mujibur Rahman's killers

January 20, 2011 18:35 IST

Bangladesh on Thursday sought the help of New Delhi to track down two convicted killers of the country's founding leader Sheikh Mujib, who are allegedly hiding in India.

"We have information that two of the convicted killers of Bangabandhu --  former Captain Majed and former Risaldar Moslehuddin, are hiding somewhere in India to evade their death penalties," Bangladesh Home secretary Abdus Sobhan Shikdar said at a joint press briefing after a two-day meeting with his Indian counterpart Gopal K Pillai, who is in Dhaka for bilateral border talks.

"We have sought India's cooperation to track them down and return them to Bangladesh," he said in the capital.

Shikdar said India had sought 'more information and fingerprints' of the two fugitive army personnel to nab them.

Home Minister Sahara Khatun, in a separate briefing, told newsmen that New Delhi agreed to extradite the two absconding convicts after Pillai made a courtesy call on her.

India was given a Red Corner Notice to return them while "they (New Delhi) has pledged to provide wholehearted support in this regard," she underlined.

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, popularly called Bangabandhu, who led Bangladesh to independence in 1971, was gunned down at his home, along with his wife and three sons, in a coup on August 15, 1975.

Sheikh Hasina, his eldest daughter who is now the country's prime minister, was abroad at the time and escaped the massacre.

The case first came to the court in 1996, when Hasina became the prime minister for the first time. She removed legal barriers enacted by the post-Mujib military governments to protect the killers. Five of the convicts were hanged in January 2010.

Police initiatives have been underway to bring back the remaining six fugitive killers, as most of them were traced down by Interpol vigil and manhunts through diplomatic channels.

"We have got the last Red Notices issued by the Interpol to track down the six fugitives after the execution of the five killers and by now most of them have been located in different parts of the world," said a senior police official.

According to police records, two of them, ex-lieutenant colonels Khandaker Abdur Rashid was hiding in Libya and often traveled to Pakistan and SHBM Noor Chowdhury was in Canada.

"Of the others (ex-lieutenant colonels), Shariful Haque Dalim is staying in Kenya, Rashed Chowdhury is in the United States and former captain Abdul Majed and army Risaldar Moslehuddin are staying in India," the official claimed.

Hasina has vowed to bring back the convicted killers of her father.

Anisur Rahman In Dhaka
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