Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury

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Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury
Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury press conference 2010.jpg
Chowdhury at a 2010 press conference
Native name সালাউদ্দিন কাদের চৌধুরী
Born (1949-03-13)13 March 1949
Gahira, Raozan Upazila, Chittagong, East Bengal, Dominion of Pakistan
Died 22 November 2015(2015-11-22) (aged 66)
Dhaka Central Jail, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Cause of death Execution by hanging
Resting place Raozan Upazila, Chittagong
Nationality Bangladeshi
Alma mater Sadiq Public School
University of Punjab[1]
Occupation Politician, former Minister
Title Member of Jatiyo Sangshad
Term 1979–1983, 1986–1987, 1988–1990, 1991–1995, 1996–2000, 2001–2005, 2008–2012
Political party Bangladesh Nationalist Party
Criminal charge 23 counts of charges including rape, torture and genocide.[2]
Criminal penalty Death penalty
Spouse(s) Farhat Quader Chowdhury
Children Hummam Quader Chowdhury
Parent(s) Fazlul Quader Chowdhury

Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury (Bengali: সালাউদ্দিন কাদের চৌধুরী; 13 March 1949 – 22 November 2015) was a convicted war criminal, former Bangladeshi politician, minister and seven-term member of parliament and member of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Standing Committee, who served as the adviser of parliamentary affairs to Prime Minister Khaleda Zia in from 2001 to 2006.[3] Despite concerns about the fairness of the proceedings, on 1 October 2013 he was convicted of 9 of 23 charges and sentenced to death by the International Crimes Tribunal of Bangladesh for crimes during the 1971 Bangladesh War of Independence.[4][5][6] He was put to death by hanging in Dhaka on 22 November 2015.[4]

Early life

Chowdhury was born on 13 March 1949 in Gahira Village.[7] He was from a political family of Raozan Upazila in erstwhile East Pakistan. He received his education from the boarding school, Sadiq Public School at Bahawalpur, Pakistan. His father, Fazlul Quader Chowdhury, was a Speaker of Pakistan National Assembly and Acting President of Pakistan from time to time before the independence of Bangladesh.[8]

Political career

Chowdhury was a member of the Bangladesh Parliament.[9] He was a member of the standing committee of Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP).[10]

Chowdhury served as a member of parliament from Rangunia for seven terms, starting in 1979, and was re-elected in 1986, 1988, and 1991.[11] He was re-elected in 1996,[11] 2001[12] and finally in 2008.[9]

War crimes trial

Chowdhury was arrested 2011 from his house to a "safe house" in Dhanmondi and questioned by the special branch of police,[13] where he was reportedly tortured.[14] The trial for his involvements in the 1971 Bangladesh genocide were due to begin in August 2011.[8]

War crime charges

Among the charges submitted against Chowdhury in the International Crimes Tribunal were:[15][16]

  1. Abduction of 7 Hindu minority and killing 6 of them on 4–5 April 1971.[17]
  2. Accompanying Pakistan army at the time of killing Maddhya Gohira Hindu Parha in Raozan on 13 April 1971.[18]
  3. Killing Kundeshwari Oushadhalaya owner and social worker Nutan Chandra Singha 13 April 1971. His son testified at the trial.[19]
  4. Accompanying Pakistan army in the killing of 32 people, arson, looting and raping.[17]
  5. Complicity in the killing of Satish Chandra Palit on 14 April, burning his house, and the deportation of his family. Satish's son testified in court against Salahuddin Quader.[20]
  6. Combined attack with Pakistan army to Hindu populated Shakhapura village at Boalkhali and killing 76 people.[16]

Trial

During Chowdhury's trial the prosecution summoned 41 witnesses to testify while four were called in his defense.[4] Commenting on the trial, the former United States Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues, Stephen Rapp, said that it was "disturbing" that limitations were placed on defense testimony.[21] Affidavits stating that Chowdhury was in Pakistan and studying law at the University of Punjab at the time of the crimes were not considered.[4][5] Defense testimony from a former Prime Minister of Pakistan and a former American Ambassador was not allowed by the court.[22]

Conviction

On 1 October 2013, the International Crimes Tribunal of Bangladesh sentenced Chowdhury to death by hanging for nine out of the 23 charges brought against him.[5] His party BNP argued that the trial is politically motivated.[23] On 18 November 2015, Bangladesh Supreme Court dismissed the appeal of Chowdhury, upholding the death sentence.[24][25] According to jail officials, Chowdhury asked for mercy in a petition to the President of Bangladesh, but his appeal was rejected.[26][27]

Execution

On 22 November 2015, 12:45 Chowdhury was executed by hanging at Dhaka Central Jail alongside a former member of Parliament found guilty of atrocities, Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed.[28][29][30][31] Law Minister Anisul Huq claimed that Chowdhury and Mojaheed submitted a plea for mercy, which Chowdhury's family denied.[28] Chowdhury was buried at his village home in Raozan Upazila, Chittagong on 22 November 2015.[32]

Family

Chowdhury was married to Farhat Quader Chowdhury. Together they had a son Hummam Quader Chowdhury.[33] In August 2016, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International alleged that Hummam was arrested August 4, 2016, and disappeared. Amnesty says multiple credible sources place him at Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) headquarters in Dhaka on 12 August, but authorities have denied having him in custody.[34] Hummam returned home on March 2017. His brother, Giasuddin Quader Chowdhury, was a member of parliament from Bangladesh Nationalist Party.[35]

References

  1. ^ "Bengali against executions of opposition leaders Imran Khan has sent a letter to the Prime Minister, Salah al-Din was evidence of innocence". News Time. 24 November 2015. Retrieved 14 August 2016. 
  2. ^ Vishakha Sonawane (18 November 2015). "Bangladeshi Supreme Court Rejects Appeals Of 2 Senior Leaders Convicted Of War Crimes, Upholds Death Sentence". International Business Times. 
  3. ^ "Please spare his life, SQ Chy's family urges President". The Financial Express. Dhaka. 6 July 2007. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Politics and death in Bangladesh: The noose tightens". Economist. 28 November 2015. Retrieved 15 December 2015. 
  5. ^ a b c "Bangladesh MP Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury to hang for war crimes". BBC News. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  6. ^ Bartrop, Paul R. (2012). A Biographical Encyclopedia of Contemporary Genocide. ABC-CLIO. p. 374. ISBN 978-0313386787. 
  7. ^ ঔদ্ধত্যের আরেক নাম সাকাচৌ. bdnews24.com (in Bengali). 
  8. ^ a b "SQ Chy's trial to begin in August: Quamrul". BD Inn. 14 July 2011. Archived from the original on 1 November 2013. Retrieved 29 August 2011. 
  9. ^ a b "9th Parliament MP List" (PDF). Bangladesh Parliament (in Bengali). Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 August 2009. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  10. ^ "Standing Committee". Bangladesh National Party (BNP). Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  11. ^ a b "SQ Chy feared Rangunia debacle". bdnews24.com. 5 September 2011. Archived from the original on 30 October 2012. Retrieved 18 September 2011. 
  12. ^ "8th Parliament MP List" (PDF). Bangladesh Parliament. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 April 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2011. 
  13. ^ "SQ Chy being quizzed at this 'safe house'". Independent. Dhaka. 10 May 2011. Archived from the original on 24 May 2012. Retrieved 29 August 2011. 
  14. ^ Klasra, Rauf (19 December 2010). "Bitter past revived: Labelled traitor, an MP reminisces". The Express Tribune. Retrieved 3 March 2016. 
  15. ^ "Charges against SQ Chy". Dhaka Tribune. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  16. ^ a b "The charges against Salauddin Quader". bdnews24.com. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  17. ^ a b "Justice delayed, but not finally denied". The Daily Observer. Dhaka. Retrieved 27 January 2016. 
  18. ^ "Salauddin". The Daily Observer. Dhaka. Retrieved 27 January 2016. 
  19. ^ "Nutan Chandra's son testifies against SQ Chy". bdnews24.com. Retrieved 27 January 2016. 
  20. ^ "Son testifies on father's killing". The Daily Star. Retrieved 27 January 2016. 
  21. ^ Pennington, Matthew (20 November 2015). "US criticism grows over Bangladesh war crimes tribunal". Associated Press. Retrieved 15 December 2015. 
  22. ^ Farbstein, Susan (13 November 2015). "Threat of Extrajudicial Executions Looms in Bangladesh". The Human Rights Program. Harvard Law. Retrieved 15 December 2015. 
  23. ^ "Bangladesh sentences 7th opposition lawmaker to death". The Times of India. Reuters. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 1 October 2013. 
  24. ^ "SC publishes full verdict on Salauddin, Mojaheed". Prothom Alo. Retrieved 2015-11-20. 
  25. ^ "Bangladesh Set to Hang Opposition Leaders Within Days". NDTV. Retrieved 2015-11-20. 
  26. ^ "Bangladesh president rejects mercy plea of 2 war criminals". The Times of India. Retrieved 2015-11-21. 
  27. ^ "Bangladesh president rejects death-row mercy petitions". Economic Times. Retrieved 21 November 2015. 
  28. ^ a b Barry, Ellen (22 November 2015). "Bangladesh Hangs 2 Leaders Convicted of War Crimes". New York Times. Retrieved 15 December 2015. 
  29. ^ Habib, Haroon (22 November 2015). "Two top Bangladesh war criminals hanged". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 2015-11-21. 
  30. ^ সাকা-মুজাহিদের ফাঁসি কার্যকর. Prothom Alo (in Bengali). Retrieved 2015-11-21. 
  31. ^ "B'desh on alert after execution of 2 Oppn leaders for war crimes". Hindustan Times. 22 November 2015. Retrieved 2015-11-21. 
  32. ^ "SQ Chy buried amid tight security". The Daily Star. Retrieved 2015-11-22. 
  33. ^ "Verdict leak: HC asks SQ Chy’s wife, son to surrender to lower cour". The Daily Star. November 22, 2016. 
  34. ^ "Amnesty, HRW condemn 'detention' of SQ Chy, Mir Quasem's sons". The Daily Star (Bangladesh). 15 August 2016. Retrieved 4 September 2016. 
  35. ^ "Son of SQ Chy returns home after 7 months". The Daily Star. 2017-03-04. Retrieved 2017-08-02. 
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