In 1971, Bangladesh was liberated by millions of lives. A group of people freed the country by struggles and sacrifices, another group committed heinous killings and war crimes. The first group is freedom fighter, another is war criminal. It should be required estimation of their achievements and crimes. This is the theory of war criminals and freedom fighters.
The war crimes were occurred in three levels in independence war. First, on night of 25 March, 1971, Pak army attacked illegally and killed thousands of Bengalis. They killed many intellectuals also. On that night, no Bengali collaborated with Pak army. At the beginning of war, Pak forces committed all crimes by themselves. They were top war criminals.
Second, during war, both Pak army and Bengali guerrillas committed war crimes. Pak forces were assumed criminals and guerrillas were fighters. It is clearly mentioned in ‘The unfinished autobiography of Bangabandhu’ by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Sheikh Rehena, on page -315 that, “In 1971, he (Monayem Khan) was killed at home by an attack of guerrilla freedom fighters.” The same in “The selected history of liberation war” page-67-68, author Mahmud Iqbal mentioned that “On 14th October, 1971, the freedom fighters burned up the Siddhirgonj power house near Dhaka. They cut off electric wires in several places. Some wireless sets occupied. No Bengali engineer agreed to come to repair the Power House. Pakistani military officials obliged to emigrant five Pakistani engineers to repair the Power House. But freedom fighters let none of those five engineers go back to Pakistan alive.” Thus, by clashes of Pak army and guerrillas, there caused about three million martyrs and it ensured victory. These martyrs were not listed as fighters. They might oppose country’s liberation or they were collaborators, Razakars, Al-Badrs, As-Shams etc. So their killings were not noted war crimes.
Third, there occurred heinous killings even after victory. The so called freedom fighters committed killings in absence of Pak forces. For example, just after three days of victory on 19th December, 1971, Bangabir Kader Siddiqui and his forces killed four men in broad daylight. (Watch online video here-https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ep8fNT4-A9g)|). After independence, the killers killed numerous Bengalis in such way all over Bangladesh. For example, in Sirajganj- Asaduzzaman Siraji, saifuddin Khan Majlis, Maulana Usman Gani, In Feni- Muhammad Ilias, Azharus Sobhan, In Satkhira- Maulana Abdus Sattar, In Dhaka- Maulana Pir Dewan Ali, In Cox’s Bazar- eminent parliamentarian Maulvi Farid Ahmed and so many countless wise and talented men were killed by freedom fighters. Author Nuruzzaman Manik mentioned, “After achieving liberation in December, 1971, killing of intellectuals had been continued. For instance, Dr. Mansur Ali (killed on Dec 21, 1971) film maker Zahir Raihan (went missing on 30 January, 1972) and journalist Golam Rahman (killed on 11 Jan, 1972). Unfortunately true that, the killing of intellectuals is still running which has been starting from 1971”. (Nuruzzaman Manik, ‘another hero of liberation war’ page -77, Dhaka, Suddhashar Publishing- 2009). An arrest warrant was issued against Bangabir Kader Siddiqui from India on charge of crimes against humanity. Later, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman forgave him and honored by Bir Uttam title. Thus, the responsibility of post-victory assassinations imposed illegally on absent Pak forces and their collaborators.
So, there were two catagories of war criminals in liberation. Pak forces, the beginning criminals of the war and freedom fighters, criminals against humanity after victory. This is the real theory of war criminals. But it is not approved in Bangladesh. Bangabandhu himself forgave Pakistani war criminals and honored post-victory criminals by freedom fighter title. As a result, innocent and helpless war affected Bengali civilians are now convicted war criminals illegally. Such as, Prof. Golam Azam, Salah Uddin Qader Chowdhury, Maolana Delwar Hossain Sayeedi and others. They are not war criminals at all. During war, they were as like as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and her husband Dr. M. A. Wazed Miah, obliged to Pak forces only to protect themselves and their family members.
The theory of freedom fighters is almost same. Who fought for liberation of Bangladesh, were freedom fighters. Bangabandhu had declared their specific identities and numbers before war started. Bangabandhu said, “The seven and half crore Bengalis will leave their last drop of blood to liberate the country Inshallah.” On 7th March (1971), he declared, “You can never subjugate seven and half crore Bengalis.” On 10th January, 1972, Bangabandhu delivered that, “the people who were martyrs in liberation war, who were killed by cruel Pak forces, I convey respect to their souls. Today my country has been independent by sacrificing millions of their lives. Today my aim has been filled up. Bangladesh is independent today. I approach respects to farmers, labourers, students, intellectuals, polices and all inhabitants of the country. You take my compliments. Independence has been brought by large sacrifices. Three million Bengalis were killed. You have laid lives and sufferred lot. You are the owner of this independence. (Click here for online video- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GVSx5fbYN9M). Thus, Bangabandhu clearly declared all seven and half crore Bengalis of 1971 as freedom fighters. This is real theory of freedom fighters in Bangladesh. Bangabandhu did never segregate common inhabitants as fighters, non-fighters and martyrs family. During his reigne, there was no freedom fighter quota.
Bangabandhu initiated seventy five million freedom fighters theory is now worthless. At present, there only two lac freedom fighters are listed in Bangladesh. Of them, about one lac list has been taken from the red book of India. At the beginning of the war, these listed fighters departed to India and stayed there during war long. They are certified as Mujib forces, the representatives of Mujibnagar government and the armed fighters receiving training there. The rest one lac fighters were living in Bangladesh during war. They are same as killer forces of Kader Siddiqui mentioned above video. After victory, they started terrible terrorism and assassination in the country. Bangabandhu ordered them to surrender arms and join in service. They joined the services with freedom fighter certificate. So their children and grandchildren are still in freedom fighters quota. It proved that only two lac listed freedom fighters liberated Bangladesh. All others than these two lac listed fighters were in opposition of liberation. That is, Bangabandhu and all prisoners, four national leaders and about one crore refugees, three million martyrs and two lac distorted women as well as all seventy five million Bengalis are not listed freedom fighter although they were in favor of independence.
Therefore, the conventional theory of war criminals and freedom fighters of Bangladesh is paradoxical. For it, the real freedom fighters are deprived of recognition. The main killers and war criminals are privileged by freedom fighter quota facilities. We should amend it and practice the true. All seventy five million Bengalis of 1971 alongwith Dr. M. A. Wazed Miah should be recognized freedom fighters and present sixteen crore Bangladeshi should be included to their family members. Conventional two lac freedom fighters list and quota policy should be banned. Thirty lac martyrs and two lac distorted women should also be declared freedom fighters. Without their sacrifice, the number of martyrs in liberation war would more than three crore.
– Siraji M. R. Mostak, Advocate, Dhaka.