HC verdict on BDR mutiny: Death penalty for 139, life term for 185
The High Court upheld death sentences for 139 people in connection with the mutiny at the border guards’ headquarters in Dhaka in 2009. Death penalty of 8 has been commuted to life term.
The court also upheld life imprisonment for 146 people. A Dhaka court had sentenced 160 people to life in prison, two of them have died and the remaining 12, including ruling Bangladesh Awami League (AL) local leader Torab Ali, were acquitted.by the High Court on Monday.
Among the 69 people who had been acquitted by the trial court, the HC sentenced 31 to life in prison.
UNB adds: Justice Md Nazrul Islam Talukder read out the verdict in the afternoon, after the three-member bench led by Justice Md Shawkat Hossain, also consists of Justice Md Abu Zafar Siddique, expressed their observations in this regard since Sunday.
In its recommendation, the High Court said the 'Operation Dal Bhat', introduced by the caretaker government, was a wrong decision.
It also asked Bangladesh Rifles (BDR), renamed as Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB), to maintain professional relations between officers and soldiers as per the BGB Act.
The HC also asked the authorities concerned to form probe committees to investigate why intelligence agency of BDR (now BGB) failed to know beforehand about such a big mutiny.
It also asked the government to pay the dues to the 'BDR' officials sacked following the carnage.
Justice Siddique observed that a vested quarter had wanted to destroy a skilled and trained force through the Pilkhana BDR mutiny to destablise the country and jeopardise its economic and social security.
He also described the BDR mutiny as an unprecedented incident in the world history. Later, the court postponed the reading out of the verdict till Monday morning.
On April 3 last, the special HC bench kept the verdict pending as Curia Advisari Vult (CAV) after concluding the hearing on the appeals and the death reference.
A Dhaka court on November 5, 2013 sentenced 152 soldiers of the erstwhile Bangladesh Rifles and two civilians to death, and 161 others to life imprisonment for their involvement in the BDR mutiny.
A total of 257 appeals were filed with the High Court against the lower court verdict.
Seventy-four people, including 57 army officials, were killed in the BDR mutiny on February 25-26 in 2009 at the Pilkhana headquarters in Dhaka.
The paramilitary force was later renamed Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB).