|Abu Sadat Mohammad Sayem|
The High Court yesterday opened up an opportunity for six persons, who faced trial with Col (Retd) Abu Taher under martial law regulations, to voluntarily place their arguments before the court in the trial hearing.
The persons are: Sirajul Alam Khan, Mahmudur Rahman Manna, Hasanul Huq Inu, Sharif Nurul Ambia, ASM Abdur Rab and Maj (Retd) Zia Uddin.
During hearing on a Writ petition filed challenging trial and sentence of Col (Retd) Abu Taher, a bench of the HC asked Deputy Attorney General MK Rahman and petitioner's lawyer Dr Shahdeen Malik to communicate with the said persons and inform them the opportunities given by the court.
The HC bench comprising Justice AHM Shamsuddin Chowdhury and Justice Sheikh Md Zakir Hossain said that the persons can voluntarily attend the hearing over this historical case within this week.
However, they are not bound to place their statements before the court, rather they can do so, if they want, said Dr Shahdeen Malik.
It is not order or directive of the HC upon the persons, rather an opportunity given by the court of engaging themselves to this historical case, he added.
The bench said it should hear their statements of those, who faced the martial law trial, since there was no sufficient document on this matter.
Meanwhile, when the court asked Attorney General Mahbubey Alam about roles of then President, former Chief Justice Abu Sadat Mohammad Sayem, and then Chief Martial Law Administrator, Ziaur Rahman, during the trail of Taher, the AG said, "The President was puppet and all responsibilities shouldered on Zia."
Hearing on the Writ petition is likely to be held today.
Abu Taher's wife Lutfa Taher, his brother Professor Anwar Hossain and Fatema Yusuf, wife of his brother Yusuf Ali Khan, who was sentenced to life term jail at the same trial, jointly filed the Writ petition on August 22 last year.
Following the petition, the HC on August 23 last year issued a rule upon the government to explain why the regulation, under which Taher was tried and sentenced, should not be declared illegal.