The trial of 654 soldiers of the 44 battalion of the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR), including a large number of killers, planners and conspirators of last year's February 25-26 carnage, will start today at the Darbar Hall inside the Peelkhana in the capital, paramilitary a national daily newspaper wrote.
Members of the 44 battalion led by deputy assistant director Nasir, Sepoy Selim Reza, Sepoy Obaidullah and Sepoy Altaf led last year's bloody massacre inside the border guards' headquarters at the Peelkhana. A total of 30 jawans of the 44 battalion were involved in the brutal killing of the 56 army officials. All the 30 killers along with other mutineers will be produced before the court tomorrow on Tuesday.
The trial of the fifth case linked to the Peelkhana mutiny will start at the Special court-5 set up at the Darbar Hall at around 10 in the morning. Prosecutor Lt Col Kazi Anirudhha will read out the charges against the mutiny suspects. The special court had already started four trials in connection with the Peelkhana mutiny.
A total of 86 soldiers of the Dhaka Sadar battalion, including two suspected killers, are now facing the first mutiny trial, 310 jawans including four killers of the 36 battalion and 668 soldiers including five killers of the 24 battalions are facing the second and third trial respectively. There are 10 units and sub-units of the BDR inside the Peelkhana and trial will be held at all the units for trying the border guards of the units on the charge of mutiny.
Ten separate mutiny cases will be filed in this regard. Trial of three mutiny cases had already started at the Darbar Hall inside the Peelkhana while the remaining seven cases will be filed shortly. A total of 40 cases were lodged in 37 police stations in 28 districts in connection with the mutiny outside Dhaka. Of the cases, 43 have already been filed and the remaining seven cases will be filed shortly. A special court of the BDR in the first verdict on charges linked to the BDR mutiny on Wednesday sentenced all the 29 jawans (soldiers) of the 25 battalions of the paramilitary force in Panchagar to different jail terms.
BDR sources said that they had conducted an internal inquiry into the Peelkhana carnage and found that over 2,000 border guards were involved in the mutiny in the Peelkhana on February 25-26, BDR sources said. In the first such judgement after the carnage when 57 army officers serving the paramilitary force were killed at Peelkhana, a special court on April 7 sentenced all the 29 jawans of the 25 battalions of the paramilitary force in Panchagar to different jail terms.
On April 12, a special court sentenced 50 accused persons of the 20 Rifle Battalion to different jail terms for their involvement in the Thakurgaon BDR mutiny in February last year. The court, however, acquitted a jawan as the allegation brought against him could not be proved. On April 18, The BDR Special Court-3 in Feni yesterday sentenced 57 out of 62 mutiny accused jawans of the 19 Rifles Battalion to different terms in prison. The rest five were acquitted. It was the third judgment given in connection with the last year's BDR mutiny. The chairman of the court, BDR Director General Maj Gen Moinul Islam, delivered the verdict.
On April 19, The BDR Special Court-1 in Satkhira on Monday sentenced 56 out of 60 mutiny accused jawans of 7 Rifles Battalion to different terms in prison. The rest four were acquitted of the charges. Verdicts in the trial of Rajnagar Battalion of Rangamati will be held on May 2.