Judges at the International Crimes Tribunal (ICT)1 on Monday began reading out the verdict on Jamaat-e-Islami former Ameer Ghulam Azam.
Ghulam Azam, the 91 year old ex chief of Jamaat-i-Islami, was brought to the courtroom at 10:45am after arriving at the court premises around 10.20am. Dhaka Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Imanul Islam stated that Azam had started from the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Hospital, at 10am Monday. The veteran politician, accused of crimes against humanity, was transported by microbus from BSMMUH. Azam has been staying at BSMMUH prison cell due to old age related health complications.
The three-member judge panel of ICT arrived at the court premises at around 10:20am.
Chairman of ICT 1, Justice ATM Fazle Kabir, thanked the lawyers of both prosecution and defence.
Justice Anwarul Haq started reading out the summery of 243-page verdict at about 10:55am Monday in presence of Ghulam Azam. The court will read out a 65-page excerpt. The other two Justices—ATM Fazle Kabir and Jahangir Hossain will also read out partly.
Media, lawyers, and many others from various walks of life were gathering at the tribunal premises since morning.
Police and Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) were seen alert outside the tribunal premises. Security in and around the tribunal has been beefed up ahead of the verdict.
On April 16, the tribunal concluded proceedings in Ghulam Azam’s case keeping it as CAV (curia advisari vult), meaning the verdict could be delivered at any given time. Several other cases against war crimes suspects are currently underway.
Bangladesh Jamaat-e-Islami has called a nation-wide strike today. The hartal was called soon after the tribunal fixed the date to deliver the much awaited verdict on Sunday.