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Police refuse to file case against JI leaders

world Updated: Dec 07, 2007 13:36 IST
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Bangladesh police has refused to register a sedition case against three top leaders of fundamentalist Jamaat-e-Islami, accused of opposing the 1971 Liberation War, despite a court order, saying it had not received the mandatory government sanction.

"Sanction of the government is required prior to register a sedition case. But we did not get the sanction yet," the officer-in-charge (OC) of Tejgaon police station Lutfur Rahman told court a day after a magistrate ordered the police to file a case and launch an investigation against the three.

Police on Thursday sent back the case to the Court of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate seeking directives about the next course of action.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate AKM Enamul Haque forwarded the case file to the presiding magistrate Mohammad Emran Hossain Chowdhury, who had on Wednesday directed the police to register the case. Lawyers said Chowdhury would decide on Sunday if the matter should be sent to the Home Ministry for the required sanction.

A 1971 Liberation War veteran had on Tuesday appealed to the court that the three leader accused of war crimes should be tried for sedition.

JI Secretary General Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed, Assistant Secretary General Abdul Quader Mollah and former chairman of Islami Bank Shah Md Abdul Hannan were charged with carrying out massacres through their militias Al Badr, Al Shams and Razakar forces in 1971.

But Bangladesh's first army chief retired general Shafiullah on Thursday opposed the idea of filing cases at individual level against the "war criminals" saying this might allow them to "escape".