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No room for democracy in Islam: Militant leader

Detained militant leader Bangla Bhai has rejected Bangladesh's legal system derived mainly from Anglo Saxon jurisprudence.

india Updated: May 19, 2006 14:24 IST
Indo Asian News Service
Indo Asian News Service

Stating that "there is no room for democracy in Islam", detained militant leader Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai has rejected Bangladesh's legal system derived mainly from Anglo Saxon jurisprudence.

Bangla Bhai and his mentor Shaikh Abdur Rahman, who is chief of the Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), told a court in Jhalakathi, where they are accused of killing two judges by placing explosives under their vehicles, they should not be tried "in a hurry".

"We are not ordinary justice seekers as we are the first in Bangladesh to challenge the conventional judicial system," Rahman told the court before it closed the case and reserved its verdict.

"We had been able to chase away the British but yet could not dump the legal system introduced by them."

He urged "all who hold trials under satanic laws to seek Allah's forgiveness", BSS news agency said.

Ahead of fixing the date after nine days of hearing, additional district and sessions judge Tarik Ahmed allowed the accused to submit their last statements as they requested after public prosecutor Haidar Hossain summed up his two-hour-long statement demanding capital punishment for all the seven accused.

As the judge allowed one from among the accused to make a point briefly, all of them tried to speak at the same time creating a chaotic situation in the courtroom.

The court asked Rahman and his second in command Bangla Bhai to speak on behalf of the accused.

The public prosecutor said the confessions of the accused and the testimonies of the witnesses proved clearly that the militants had killed two senior assistant judges of Jhalakathi - Sohel Ahmed and Jagannath Par. "They deserve the death sentence."

The JMB top brass facing trial in person are Rahman, Bangla Bhai, military commander of the outlawed outfit Ataur Rahman Sunny, regional commanders Abdul Awal, Khalid Saifullah, Iftekhar Hassan Mamun and Sultan Hossain.

Rahman, who earlier declined to accept any lawyer for his defence, demanded that all concerned "speak the truth in a decent manner" during the trial.

"I want the trial to be held truly following Allah's law, otherwise I will divulge everything," he told the court.

Extra security measures were taken on the court premises as elite anti-crime Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) troops escorted the militant kingpins from prison to the court of additional district and sessions judge Reza Tarik Ahmed.

A total of 45 prosecution witnesses among the listed 53 testified before the court during the hearing and they included eyewitnesses of the judges' murders, policemen, doctors and landlords of houses rented by the militants for carrying out the killings.

First Published: May 19, 2006 14:24 IST