Friday, May 25, 2007

Court ruling favoured Galib; given him Tawhid Trust building

A Rajshahi court on Thursday ordered an organisation named Tawhid Trust to hand over its 5-storied building at Kajla in the city to its ousted member, an detained militant kingpin and Ahle Hadith Andolon, Bangladesh (Ahab) chief Asadullah Al Galib within 15 days.


Galib, also a Rajshahi University Arabic teacher was arrested in February 2005 after captured JMB militants named him as their spiritual head.


Zahangir Alam Mollah, judge of public safety tribunal and second special sessions court in his ruling turned down a lower court order that in 2004 adjudged Tawhid Trust and its contemporary officio as tenant of the building.


Tawhid Trust chairman Abdus Salam, secretary general (SG) SM Mahmud Alam, assistant SG Rezaul Karim and their lawyers condemned the judgment to be 'unilateral and biased' and said they would challenge it to the high court.


Abu Bakar, a trust lawyer said, Galib founded the trust and established the building, but he was expelled from the trust in January 2002 following allegations against him of misappropriation of money and abetting so called Islamist militants.


"The trust is an organisation, not private property. The committee that will represent the trust would be the tenant as per rules of land", he said.


Another lawyer Habibur Rahman said, Tawhid Trust chairman Abdus Salam, the main defendant in the suit was not called to the court during hearing on May 22 last.


Moreover, Tawhid Trust lawyers were not heard thoroughly and they were interrupted during delivering speeches, he said.


At a stage of heated debate in open court, the judge mentioned that the property belongs to Galib and it would be given to him, said Advocate Abu Bakar.


The judge's comment drew instant flak from lawyers and the judge replied, "I am not going to hear any word against Galib".


Meanwhile, intelligence agencies in 2005 found evidences that Galib channeled huge Middle Eastern funds to the militants using Tawhid Trust and its properties.


The court heard total 7 witnesses for Galib. Of them, two – Ahab second-in-command Abdus Samad Salafi and organising secretary ASM Azizullah were held along with Galib, but they were released during end of BNP-Jamaat rule.


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