1971: The Kafir killer and the mother who killed all night

Afsan Chowdhury
Thursday, May 25th, 2017
Leave a comment

 

One doesn’t learn how to be brave and coward in war, one just learns to cope with life as it comes when war breaks out. And war arrives with a resounding thud that is impossible to ignore. But what happens to people who happen to be accidental victims of a war? Or who fight for personal grief and revenge and can never get over it?

 

By the time the war began to end and Pakistani soldiers started to flee often in disorganized fashion, they would end up as preys of revenge of villagers who had faced the brunt of 1971 war suffering.  Some soldiers would be separated from their main cluster of soldiers who were trying to locate Indian column to surrender and end up among the erstwhile victims. It seems the Pakistan army never had a plan to surrender so once the orders were given, many were caught unawares.

 

16 Razakars, 1 Pakistani

 

This man from a remote Rajshahi village killed 16 people. His brother, cousin and brother –in law were killed as the Pak army swept away the resistance in April. Fter burying the dead, her crossed over, did a training stint in India returned to kill Razakars. “I butchered them all and never allowed them to say their kalema. If I did Allah would allow them a trial on Judgment Day. But without a kalema, he was not a Muslim so he was not going to be considered. They were all killed without any faith.  I made sure they all went to hell directly.”

 

This simple peasant logic seems more powerful than all the rituals of the professional faithful and professional patriots.  I don’t think the peasant went to war to preserve the constitutional pillars as some insist. They were victims of the war and went to take revenge and save themselves. The peasant doesn’t understand the fanciful world of the bhadroloks nor care much about it. He does what he thinks is his duty as his heart tells.

 

As December neared this man and his group would lurk in the bordering area hoping to catch stray Razakars and Pakistani soldiers.  One such night, a Pakistani soldier who was lost ran into their search party of two.  The desperate Pakistani grabbed one of them. He was huge and my friend Kamru’s arms were pinned to his body by this soldier.  So I took my bayonet put it against a body as I couldn’t see anything in the dark.

 

“Is that you Kamru?”

‘No.’

“Shall I shove the bayonet in?”

‘Yes,’ Kamru said.

 

He explained that it was his only kill where he couldn’t sever the head. The man is still intact, a kamla in 1971, still a kamla now. No regrets except that one he couldn’t kill as he would have liked to.

 

The widow’s rage

 

The woman’s son was killed by Razakars in May and the war ended in December. This grief stricken widow mourned for her son and prayed that she would be able to take revenge one day. She would regularly give manat in the local mazar and hope that someday something would happen to give her the opportunity.   In December as the Pak regime collapsed, the Razakars were abandoned by the Pak army to fend for themselves. While the Pakistan army took shelter under the wings of their greatest enemy the Indian army, they left their followers, supporters, collaborators and workers to face the music of a people they had tortured and killed.

 

The Razakars were caught by the villagers and most were killed. It shouldn’t shock many that many of the killers were women, taking revenge for the death of their men, husbands and son or rape of their daughters. In this village, nobody knows how many Razakars were killed but they caught and saved the one who killed the widow’s son. He was dragged to the widow who was waiting in front of her son’s grave. They tied up the Razakar and placed him in front of the waiting widow.  People made a circle to ensure he didn’t escape her ramdao. She killed the man slowly all through the night as the villagers watched.

 

War kills.

Leave a Reply

  • National
  • International