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Ex B'desh minister indicted for war crimes

February 02, 2014 14:25 IST

A former Bangladeshi minister from Jatiya Party was on Sunday indicted by a special court here on 16 war crime charges, including genocide, committed during the country's 1971 liberation war.

Syed Mohammad Qaisar, 73, formed a group named "Qaisar Bahini" with 500 to 700 men, who committed crimes against humanity in Habiganj and Brahmanbaria during the war.

He was also a commander of the Rajakars (an auxiliary group of then Pakistani army) in the districts, prosecution was quoted as saying by The Daily Star. Qaisar, a former Muslim League leader and the state minister for Agriculture during the dictatorship of H M Ershad, was arrested in May last year.

The three-member International Crimes Tribunal-2, headed by Justice Obaidul Hassan, fixed March 4 for the opening statement of the prosecution.

Qaisar pleaded not guilty after the court read out the charges against him.

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