Dhaka mutiny was pre-planned, reveals investigation


Dhaka : The investigation into the Bangladesh Rifles troopers’ mutiny last month has shown that the carnage could be “pre-planned” and around 450 border guards were involved in the massacre in which 74 people were killed.

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The investigation into the BDR mutiny revealed that “some outsiders” had knowledge about the rebellion, a top official of a law enforcement agency said.

“We have found involvement of around 450 BDR officials and jawans in the mutiny after scrutinising the video footages and photographs,” The Daily Star Tuesday quoted an investigator as saying.

The official said they are now trying to get details about the 450-odd mutineers by interrogating those who were arrested.

The border guards revolted Feb 25-26 over low wages and poor working conditions.

“We have so far identified 10 to 12 BDR members who led several groups of mutineers during the 33-hour-long bloody mutiny,” said the official.

Another investigator said: “The investigation found that it was done in a planned way. When a group of mutineers attacked and killed BDR Director General Maj Gen Shakil Ahmed at the Darbar Hall, another group simultaneously attacked his residence and injured two guards there.”

After killing army officers at the BDR headquarters, the rebels dumped the bodies in the sewer and mass graves in such a way that the rescuers found it difficult to trace those, the report said Tuesday.

Investigators said they are finding it hard to identify the BDR personnel who were on duty at the BDR gates and five armouries inside the BDR headquarters as the duty rosters had either been burnt or torn up.

“This suggests that it was a pre-planned act and we are trying to find the mastermind behind it,” said an investigator.

The mutiny by the BDR troopers broke out Feb 25 when they took control of their headquarters in the capital. The troopers revolted over low wages and poor working conditions.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina offered general amnesty to them, but the troopers were defiant and refused to lay down arms.

The government held talks with a delegation of the mutineers Feb 26 and an agreement was reached but by that time, the mutiny spread to other BDR camps around the country.

The revolt ended in the face of an imminent attack by the Bangladesh Army which moved tanks into position outside the BDR headquarters. The mutineers then laid down their arms.