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War Crimes Trial Order over Forkan Tue Arguments on Sobhan over

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Court Correspondent The International Crimes Tribunal-2 on Sunday deferred to Tuesday its order over taking cognizance of the 1971 war crimes charges brought against detained Forkan Mallik, a BNP activist of Patuakhali. With the accused in the dock, the three member-tribunal headed by Justice Obaidul Hassan passed the order. Investigation officer (IO) Satya Ranjan Roy found Forkan’s ‘involvement’ in the 1971 crimes against humanity like killing, genocide, rape, forcible conversion of Hindus to Muslims, deportation, loot and arson. On October 27, the investigation agency of the International Crimes Tribunals finalised its investigation report against war crimes-suspect Forkan, also a former activist of Muslim League (Convention) in Pakistan period that opposed the Liberation War of Bangladesh. Meanwhile, the defence counsel for war crimes accused Maulana A Sobhan, a top leader of Jamaat-e-Islami, now in custody, concluded their case summing-up arguments both on charge-wise and legal points exhausting eight days. The defence case summing-up arguments over, the prosecution instead of making counterarguments sought time for homework in this regard. The tribunal will pass order on Monday. In all, 31 prosecution witnesses (PWs), including two investigation officers, gave their evidence against the Jamaat leader, now 85. The tribunal on December 31, 2013 framed charges against accused Maulana A Sobhan for his involvement in crimes against humanity, including genocide, during the Liberation War under sections 3(2), 4(1) and 4(2) of the International Crimes (Tribunals) Act 1973. On September 20, 2012, Sobhan, the number three man in the Jamaat-e-Islami leadership hierarchy, was held by members of an army intelligence agency at the Bangabandhu Bridge toll plaza in Tangail in a case of violence. Later, the accused was handed over to the police. The tribunal, upon a prosecution plea, had shown Sobhan arrested in the case of 1971 crimes against humanity. According to the prosecution, it received allegations like genocide, arson and looting perpetrated by Sobhan, the then leader of Pabna Peace Committee (collaborator) and Pabna district Jamaat ameer, in collaboration with the Pakistan occupation forces, including Razakar, Al Badr and Al Shams, during the war. Sobhan had allegedly played a key role in organizing Razakar, Al Badr and Al Shams, the auxiliary forces of the Pakistani junta, in Pabna district.