Razakar list should have been scrutinised properly: Minister

Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Tuesday said the Liberation War Affairs Ministry should have properly scrutinised the list of Razakars before publishing it.

“The Liberation War Affairs Ministry didn’t scrutinise the list before publishing it… it should have been scrutinised,“ he said while speaking at a programme organised by Bangladesh Krishak League (BKL) at Bangabandhu Avenue in the city.

Chaired by BKL President Agriculturist Samir Chowdhury, the meeting was also addressed by former Dhaka University Vice-chancellor Prof AAMS Arefin Siddique and Deputy Minister for Education Mohibul Hassan Chowdhoury.

The Home Ministry provided a list of Razakars upon request from the Liberation War Affairs Ministry, Asaduzzaman added.

“Making a list of Razakars is a difficult job. We’ve initially sent the list of collaborators sued under the Dalal Act,” he said.

Many names from the cases were later withdrawn, the minister said. “We’d made remarks on that list, but it didn’t exactly come on the list. The list of Razakars of the Ministry of Liberation War should have closely been monitored.”

The Ministry of Liberation War Affairs on Sunday published a list of 10,789 Razakars who collaborated with the Pakistani occupation forces during the War of Liberation in 1971.

But the official list drew huge criticisms as the names of several freedom fighters are on it.

The name of International Crimes Tribunal (ICT) chief prosecutor Golam Arif Tipu has also appeared on the list.

In serial 89 of Rajshahi division (overall 606), there are names of five people, including Arif. The four others are advocate Mohsin Ali, advocate Abdus Salam, then deputy commissioner of Rajshahi Abdur Rouf and then police officer SM Abu Taleb.

In the remark column, it was mentioned that the district committee proposed releasing them.

The name of Language Movement veteran and war-wounded freedom fighter from Barishal among others is also there.

Besides, 26 Hindu community members and six women were mentioned as Razakars in the list which contains names of around 1,000 collaborators from Barishal.

Mihir Lal Dutta, a renowned Language Movement activist, died on January 20, 2007.He sustained bullet wounds in his abdomen during the Liberation War. His father and a brother were also martyred during the war. But surprisingly, he was named as a Razakar in the recently published list.

His son Shuvabrata Dutta vented anger over it and demanded punishment of those involved in preparing the list.

Dr Manisha Chakraborty, member secretary of Bangladesher Samajtantrik Dal’s district unit, said her father Tapan Kumar Chakraborty, who is a listed freedom fighter, was also mentioned as a Razakar in the list.

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Her anger does not end here as the list also includes her grandmother Usha Rani Chakraborty, wife of martyred freedom fighter Sudhir Chakraborty.