Road Transport and Bridges Minister Obaidul Quader on Wednesday urged the authorities concerned to bolster efforts to bring back the fugitive killers of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
"Strong efforts are ongoing to bring back the convicted killers who’re hiding abroad. We’re demanding to strengthen this diplomatic effort in the days to come," he said.
Quader, general secretary of ruling Awami League, made the remarks though a written speech to the media after the arrest of Abdul Majed, a convicted killer of Bangabandhu.
Majed went into hiding before the Awami League came to power in 1997 and detectives had been working to trace him ever since. Quader said the process to execute the verdict as per the court has already started.
He said the assassination of Bangabandhu and most of his family members was not only an effort to exterminate a party and its ideals but also it was to end the future of the country.
Five killers of Bangabandhu – Syed Farooq Rahman, Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Bazlul Huda, AKM Mohiuddin Ahmed and Mohiuddin Ahmed – were hanged in January 2010.
Another killer Aziz Pasha met natural death in Zimbabwe in 2001.
On November 19, 2009, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court upheld the death penalty of 12 convicted former army officials for the assassination of Bangabandhu and his family members.
The fugitive killers are – former Lt Col Khandaker Abdur Rashid, SHBM Noor Chowdhury, Shariful Haque Dalim, Rashed Chowdhury, and Risaldar Moslehuddin.
Interpol has issued a red notice against them.
The Awami League also demanded immediate execution of the death penalty against Majed.
“We, on behalf of Bangladesh Awami League, are demanding the government and the authorities concerned for immediate execution of the death sentence,” Quader said.
There is no legal bar on execution of the death penalty according to the country’s constitution and the existing Criminal Code of Procedure, said the statement sent by AL Office Secretary Barrister Biplab Barua.
There is specific period for execution of the death sentence mentioned in the laws as well, he said.
The Supreme Court upheld the death sentence issued by the trial court and the counsels for the killers were present at all stage from the lower court to the Supreme Court. Subsequently, the Supreme Court rejected the review petition of the convicted killers, said Quader.
He said the people are now passing through the global and national crisis. “So, now our prime task is to face the crisis caused by coronavirus in united way.”
He urged the people of the country, including AL leaders and activists to be alert against the conspiracy activities of the vested quarters alongside facing the coronavirus crisis.
Bangladesh on Wednesday announced detection of 54 new coronavirus cases and three deaths. The country has for confirmed 218 cases and 20 deaths.