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Collection of Newspaper Reports during 1971

Collection of Newspaper Reports during 1971

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Collection of newspaper and magazine editorial and reports from all over the world regarding the mass slaughter of innocent people of Bangladesh during 1971.

genocide, 1971, refugee, press review of 1971, independence war of bangladesh, mass slaughter, newspaper articles on liberation war of bangladesh, news clips on liberation war of bangladesh, newspaper reports on genocide in bangladesh, news clips on pakistani army atrocities, bangladesh liberation war 1971 newspapers
Collection of newspaper and magazine editorial and reports from all over the world regarding the mass slaughter of innocent people of Bangladesh during 1971.

genocide, 1971, refugee, press review of 1971, independence war of bangladesh, mass slaughter, newspaper articles on liberation war of bangladesh, news clips on liberation war of bangladesh, newspaper reports on genocide in bangladesh, news clips on pakistani army atrocities, bangladesh liberation war 1971 newspapers

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Courtesy of MMR Jalal

Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Anthony Hucarmbu
since the State was
in and having enjoyed
the confidence of many of the lead-
ers of Pakistan since that time. he
wrote his report with real personal
"We were told by thc Ministry of
Information officials to show in a
patriotic the great job the army
was doing," told us.
There was no question of his re-
porting what he saw for his own
paper. He was allowed to file a
story, which \vas published in The
Sunday Times on May 2, which re-
ported only the events of March 25/
26, when t.he Bengali troops muti-
nied and atrocities ,"vere committed
against non-Bengalis.
Even references to the danger of
famine were deleted by the censor.
That increased his crisis of con·
After some days' hesitation, he
decided, in his own words, that
"either I would write the full story
of what I had seen, or I would have
to stop writing: I would never again
be able to write with any integrity."
And so he got on a plane and came
to London.
We have been able to check his
story in great detail with other refu-
gees in a position to have had a wide
knowledge of events in East Bengal
as a whole, and with objective diplo-
matic sources,
of up his house, most of his pO!ssessJ()ns
the and his job as one of most re-
spected journalists in the country.
be- There was only one condition: we
re- I must not publish his story until he
had gone back into P.lkistan and
brought out his wife and five chil·
The Sund:J]' Times agreed, and
:\Iascarenhas went back to Karachi.
After,.1 wait of ten days an overseas
cable arrived at the private address
of a Sunday Times executive.
"Export formalities completed,"
it read, "Shipment begins ft.londay."
Mascarenhas had succeeded in
getting permission for his wife and
family to leave the country. He
himself had been forbidden to leave.
He found a way of leaving anyway.
On the last leg of his journey in-
side Pakistan, he found himself
sitting in a plane across the aisle
from a senior Ministry of Informa-
tion official whom he knew well. A
phone call from the airport could
have led to his arrest.
There was no phone call, how-
ever, and last Tuesday he arrived
back in London.
1\fascarenhas writes about what
he saw in East Pakistan with spe-
cial authority and objectivity. As a
Goan Christian by descent, he is
neither a Hindu nor a Muslim. Hav-
ing lived most of his life in what is
now Pakistan, having held a Pakis-
WEST PAKISTA:"'S Army has 'Supplies the missing
been systematicnlly massacring the tragedy of Bengal:
thousands of civilians in East Pakis- refugees have fled.
tan since the cnd of ~ I a r c h . This is There is a remarkable story
the horrifying reality behind the hind Anthony !l.fascarenhas's
news blackout imposed by President port.
Yahp Khan's government since the When. at the end of March, the
end of March. This is the reason P,lkistan army flew two divisions
why more than five million refugees into East Pakistan to "sort out" the
have streamed out of East Pakistan Bengali rebels, it moved in secret
into India. risking cholera and But ,lbout two weeks later the Pak·
famine. istan government invited eight
The curtain of silence is broken Pakistani journalists to fly to East
today for the first time by Anthony Bengal. The idea - as government
Mascarenhas. the Sunday Times officials left the journalists in no
correspondent in Pakistan. He has doubt - was to give the people of
seen what the Pakistan armv has West Pakistan a reassuring picture
been doing. He has left Pakistan to of the "return to normalcy" in the
lei I the world. eastern half of the country. Seven
The army has not merely been of the journalists have done as they
killing supporters of the idea of were intended. BlIt one was
BangIa Desh, an independent East Mascarenhas, who is assistant editor
Bengal. It has deliberately been of the .Morning News in Karachi,
ma<,sacring others, Hindus and Ben- and was also The Sunday Times
gali l\luslims. Hindus have been
shot and beaten to death with clubs Pakistan correspondent.
simply because tney are Hindus. On Tuesday, j\,1ay 18, he arrived,
Villages have been burned. unexpectedly, in The Sunday Times
Sporadic and unconfirmed re- office in London. There was, he told
ports of atrocities by the Pakistan us, a story he wanted to write: the
army have been reaching the out- tflIe story of what had happened
side ,>\'odd for some time, notably in East Bengal to drive five million
from refugees, missionaries and people to flight.
diplomats. The report by Anthony He made it plain that he under-
Mascarenhas - appearing in full on stood that if he wrote his story there
pages twelve to fourteen today - is could be no going back to Karachi
a detailed account of for him. He said he had made up
pre:C1SlOn and authority. He I his mind to leave Pakistan: to
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
bearded old man came haltingly
from the hut. Rathare pounced on
"Do you know this man?"
"Yes, Sahib, He is Abdul BarL"
"Is he a jauji?"
"No, Sahib, he is a tailor from
"Tell me the truth."
"Khuda Kassam (God's oath),
Sahib, he is a tailor."
There was a sudden silence.
Rathore looked abashed as I told
"For God's sake let him go.
more proof do you want of
But the jawans were apparently
unconvinced and kept milling
around Bari. It was only after r
had once more interccded on his
behalf that Rathore ordered Bari
to be released. Bv th:1I time he was
a cmmpled, speechless heap of ter-
ror. But his life had h:en saved.
Others have not been as for-
For six days as I tr:1\'elled with
the officers of the lith Division
he3dquarters ;1[ Clmilla r witnessed
at close quarters the extent of the
killing, r saw Hindu.;" hunted from
village to vilLige :md door to door,
shot otf-hand after :J cursor;
"short-arm Iilspection" .;,howed the;'
were uncircumcised. I hJ\e heard
the screams of men bludgeoned [0
death in the compound of the Cir-
cuit House (civ'l! administrative
heJdqu3rters) in Camilla. I have
seen truckloads \.Jf orher human
targets Jnd those who had the
humanity 10 try to, help them
hauled otf "for dispos:ll" under the
cover of dark ne\s and curfew. I
h3\'e witnessed the ['nlujjty d "kill
and burn missions" as the army
units, after dearing \lut the rebels,
pursued (he pogrom in the [Owns
and the villages,
I have seen whole villages de-
vastated by "punitive action."
And in the olficers mess at night
have listened incredulously as
otherwise brave and honourable
men proudly chewed over the d3Y's
"How many did yOll gel?"
The answers are seared in my
ALL THIS is being done, as Jny
\Vest Pakistani officer will tell you,
for the "preservation of the unity,
integrity and the ideology of
Pakistan." It is. of course, too late
that. The very military action
is designed to hold together
two wings of the country.
by J thousand miles of
has confirmed the ideologi-
The truckloads
of human targets
:\t le3st it could be plainly seen
that Bari was nl)t ;1 Hindu.
The interrl1gatjnf1 proceeded.
"Tell me, why were you run-
By this time Bari, wild-eyed and
trembling violently. could not
answer. He buckled at the knees.
"He looks like a /au;i. sir," vol-
unteered one jall'lJf/ as Bari
hauled to his feet. (Fauji is
Urdu word for soldier: the
uses it for the Bengali rebels it
hounding. )
"Could be," I
mutter grimly,
Abdul Bari was clouted several
times \I.-ith the butt end of a rifle.
then ominously pushed against a
wall. Mercifully his screams
brought a young head peeping from
the shadows of a nearby hut. Bari
shouted something in Bengali. The
head vanished. later a
BARI had run out of luck. are not the isolated acts of back of the
Like thousands of other people in commanders in the field. called out
East he had made the Pakistani soldiers are running, Sahib.
take - fatal mistake of run- not the only ones who have been Major Rathore brought
ning within sight of a Pakistani killing in East Bengal, of course. vehicle to an abrupt halt,
patrol. On the night of March 25 - and taneously reaching for the
was 24 years old, a man this I was allowed to report by the made light machine-gun
surrounded by soldiers. was Pakistani censor - the Bengali against the door. Less
trembling, because he was about to troops and paramilitary units sta- yards away a man could be seen
be shot. tioned in East Pakistan mutinied loping through the knee-high
"Normally we would have killed and attacked non-Bengalis with paddy.
him as he ran," I was informed atrocious savagery. "For God's sake don't shoot," I
chattily by Major Rathore, the G-2 Thousands of families of unfor- cried. "He's unarmed. He's only a
Ops. of the 9th Division, as we tunate l\fuslims, many of them villager."
stood on the outskirts of a tiny viI- refugees from Bihar who chose Pak- Rathore gave me a dirty look
near l\fuzafarganj, about 20 istan at the time of the partition and fired a warning burst.
south of ComilIa, "But we riots in 194i, were mercilessly As the man sank to a crouch in
::.Ire checking him out for your sake. wiped out. Women \Vere raped, or the lush carpet of green, two
You are new here and r see you had their bre3sts tom out with spe- jawans were already' on their way
have 3 squeamish stomach." dally-fashioned knives. Children to dr3g him in.
kill him?" I asked with did not eSC3pe the horror: the The thud of :1 rifle hutt across
concern. lucky ones were killed with their the shoulders preceded the ques-
"Because he might be :1 Hindu or parents; but many thousands of tjaning.
he might be J rebel. perhaps a stu- others must go throu;zh what life "\Vho are you'?"
dent or an Awami Leaguer. They rem3ins for them with ..:yes gouged ":\1erc;;. Sahib! :\1;; name is
know we are sorting them out and out :lnd limbs roughly 3mputated. Abdul Bari. I'm a tailor from the
betray themselves by' running." \fore than 20.000 bodies of non- 0iew :\farket in Dacca,"
why are you killing them? Bengalis been found in the "Don't lie to me, Yl)U're a Hindu.
And why pick on the Hindus?" I m3in towns, such as Chi1l3gong. Why were you running?"
perSlSted. Khuln3 and Jessore. The real toll. "It's almost curfew time, Sahib,
"\fust I remind you," Rathore I was told everywhere in East Ben- and I was going to my village."
S31d .;,c\'erely. "hO\v they have tried gal, may have been as high as "Tell me the truth, \Vhy were
to destroy P:lkistan? Now under 100,000; for thous3nds of non- you running'?"
the cover of the fighting we have Bengalis ha\'e \':mished without a Before the man could answer he
an c'\;cellenr opportunity of tlnishing trace, W3S quickly frisked fur wcapons by
them off." The govcrnment of Pakist::.ln has a jawan while another quickly
"Of course," he added hastilY, let the world know al"out that first snatched away his lungi. The skinny
'\\ e ;lfe only killing the Hindu men. horror. \\'hat it has suppressed is body that W35 bared revealed the
We ;lre soldiers. not cow3rds like the second :lnd worse horror which. distinctive traces of circumcision,
the ret-els. They kill our women Jnd followed when its own :Jrmy took which is llrJigatory for \!uslims.
chddren." ovcr the killing. \Vest P:lkistanl of-
I W:\S my first ficials pri\:lrelv calculate that alk)-
glimp"C of the stain of blood \I.'hich gether both sides have killed 250,000
\pre:ld over the otherwise vcrd- people - not counting those who
,lnt LInd of East Beng3!. First it was have died of famlnt: :lnd disease.
the massacre of the non-Bengalis Reacting to the almost success-
:n a sav3ge outburst of Bengali ful breakaway of the pnn'ince,
hatred. it was maSSJere. de- \l"hich has more than h;llf the caun-
liC'\crately carried out by the West try's population, General Yahya
Pakist:.m army. Khan's military gO\emment is rush-
The pogrom's victims are not only ing through its own "tinal solution"
the Hindus of East BengJI - who of the East Bengal problem.
constitute about 10 per cent of the "We are determined to cleanse
5 million population - but also East Pakist:m once and for JII of
many thousands of Bengali Mus- the threat of secession, even if it
lims. These include university and mC3ns killing orf two million people
college students. teachers. Awami and ruling the province as :l colony
LCJgue and Left-Wing political for 30 years," I was repeatedly told
cadres and every one the army by senior military and civil officers
catch of the 176.000 Bengali in Dacca :lnd Camilla.
militarymen and police who mud- The West Pakistan army in East
nied on March 26 in a spectacular. Bengal is doing exactly that with a
though untimely and ill-starred bid terrifying thoroughness.
create an independent Republic WE HAD BEEN racing Jgainst
BangIa Desh, the setting sun after J visit to
\Vhat I saw and heard with un- Chandpur (the West Pakistan army
and ears during my prudently stays indoors at night in
Bengal in late April East Bengal) when one of the
that the kill- I jawans (privates) crouched in the
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
as the
with amazulg
the office
Law Administrator of
on the morning of April 19, I saw
the off-hand manner in which
sentences were meted out. A Bihari
of had walked
of held in
in the
it over.
he casually
names on the list.
"Bring these four to me this
for .. he said, He
at the again. The
flicked once more.••... and
this thief along with them,"
The death sentence had been
pronounced over a glass of coconut
milk. I was informed that two of
the prisoners were Hindus, the
third a "student," and the fourth
an Awami league organiser. The
"thid," it transpired, was a lad
named Sebastian who had been
caught moving the household ef-
fects of a Hindu friend to his own
Later that evening I saw these
men, their hands and legs tied
loosely with a single rope, being
led down the road to the Circuit
House compound. A little after
curfew, which was at 6 o'clock, a
flock of squawking mynah birds
were disturbed in their play by the
thwacking sound of wooden clubs
meeting bone and flesh.
Baluch Regiment had two claims to
fame according to the mess banter.
One was his job as ADC to Major-
Gen. Shaukat Raza, commanding
officer of the 9th Division. The other
was thrust on him by his colleagues'
Azmat, it transpired, was the only
officer in the group who had not
made a "kill." Major Bashir needled
him mercilessly.
"Come on Azmat," Bashir told
him one night, "we are going to
make a man of you. Tomorrow we
will see bow you can make them
run. It's so easy:'
To underscore the point Bashir
went into one of his long spiels.
Apart from his duties as SSO,
Bashir was also "education officer"
at Headquarters. He was the only
in the tide of resentment
the echelons of the
the in-
stationed in East
The Eastern Com-
at Dacca continues to domi-
nate the of the Central Gov-
ernment. worth point-
out are not re-
hued: Khan is a common surname
in Pakistan.]
When the army units fanned out
in Dacca on the of March
25, in against
the the small
hours of nen mClrnl.ng,
of them carried lists of
liquidated. These the
Hindus and numbers of Mus-
lims; students, Awami
professol"S. journalists and
who had been prominent in Sheikh
movement. The charge,
now publicly made, that the army
was subjected to mortar attack
from the Jaganath Hall, where the
Hindu university students lived,
hardly justifies the obliteration of
two Hindu colonies, built around
the temples on Ramna racecourse,
and a third in Shakrepati, in the
heart of the old city. Not does it
explain why the sizeable Hindu pop-
ulations of Dacca and the neigh-
bouring industrial town of Nara-
yanganj should have vanished so
completely during the round-the-
clock curfew on March 26 and 27.
There is similarly no trace of scores
of Muslims who were rounded up
during the curfew hours. These peo-
ple were eliminated in a planned
operation: an improvised response
to Hindu aggression would have had
vastly different results.
Touring Dacca on April 15 I
found the heads of four students
lying rotting on the roof of the
Iqbal Hall hostel. The caretaker
said they had been killed on the
night of March 25. I also found
heavy traces of blood on the two
staircases and in four of the rooms.
Behind Iqbal Hall a large residen-
tial building seemed to have been
singled out for special attention by
the army. The walls were pitted
with bullet holes and a foul smell
still lingered on the staircase: al-
though it had been heavily
powdered with DDT. Neighbours
said the bodies of 23 women and
children had been carted away only
and sent their own children to be
educated in Calcutta. It had reached
the where culture was
in Hindu culture, and East Pak-
istan was under the control
of the Marwari in Cal-
cutta. We have to sort them out to
restore the land to the and
the to their
Major Bashir. He came
from the ranks. He is SSO of
9th Dhrision at Camilla and he
boasts of a personal bodycount of
28. He had his own reasons for what
has happened. "This is a war be-
tween the pure and the impure," he
informed me over a cup of
tea. "The people here may
Muslim names and call themselves
Muslims. But they are Hindus at
heart. You won't believe that the
mould (mulls) of the Cantonment
mosque here issued a farhwo (edict)
during Friday prayers that the
pie would attain janar (paradise if
they killed West Pakistanis. We
sorted the bastard out and we are
now sorting out the others. Those
who are left will be real Muslims.
We will even teach them Urdu."
Everywhere I found officers and
men fashioning imaginative gar-
ments of justification from the
fabric of their own prejudices.
Scapegoats had to be found to legiti-
mise, even for their own con-
sciences, the dreadful "solution'" to
what in essence was a political
problem: the Bengalis won the elec-
tion and wanted to rule. The Pun-
jabis, whose ambitions and interests
have dominated government poli·
cies since the founding of Pakistan
in 1947, would brook nO erosion of
their power. The army. backed them
Officials privately justify what
has been done as a retaliation for
the massacre of the non-Bengalis
before the army moved in. But
events suggest that the pogrom was
not the result of a spontaneous or
undisciplined reaction. It was
It seems clear that the "sorting-
out" began to be planned about the
time that Lt. Gen. Tikka Khan took
over the governorship of East Ben-
gal, from the gentle, self-effacing
Admiral Ahsan, and the military
command there, from the scholarly
Lt.-Gen. Sahibzada Khan. That was
at the beginning of March, when
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's civil dis-
obedience movement was gathering
momentum after the postponement
of the assembly meeting from which
the Bengalis hoped for so much.
President Yahya Khan, it is said,
cal and emotional break. East Ben-
can be in Pakistan
heavy the
the army is dominated
who trs1d!t!OnliUy
and the Bengalis.
The break is so cornpllete
that few Bengalis will
seen in the
Pakistani. I had Ii
of this kind during
to Dacca when I went to
an old friend. ''I'm .. he told
me as he turned have
changed. The
and I knew has ceased to exist
us it behind us."
later a Punjabi army of-
ficer, talking about the massacre of
the non-Bengalis before' the army
moved in, told me: have
treated us more brutally the
Sikhs did in the partition riots in
1947. How can we ever forgive or
forget this.?"
The bone-erushing military op-
eration has two distinctive features.
One is what the authorities like to
call the "cleansing process": a
euphemism for massacre. The other
is the "rehabilitation effort." This
is a way of describing the moves to
turn East Bengal into a docile
colony of ,\-Vest Pakistan. These
commonly used expressions and the
repeated official references to "mis-
creants" and "infiltrators" are part
of the charade which is being en-
acted for the benefit of the world.
Strip away the propaganda, and the
reality is colonisation - and killing.
The justification for the annihi-
lation of the Hindus was para-
phrased by Lt. Gen. Tikka Khan,
the military governor of East Paki-
stan, in a radio broadcast I heard
on April 18. He said: 'The Muslims
of East Pakistan, who had played a
leading part in the creation of Pak-
istan, are determined to keep it
alive. However, the voice of the
vast majority had been suppressed
through coercion, threats to life and
property by a vocal, violent and ag-
gressive minority, which forced the
Awami League to adopt the de-
structive course."
Others, speaking privately, were
more blunt in seeking justification.
'The Hindus had completely un-
dermined the Muslim masses with
their money," Col. Nairn, of 9th
Division headquarters told me in
the officers mess at Camilla. They
bled the province white. Money,
food and produce flowed across the
borders to India. In some cases they
made up more than half the teach-
ing staff in the colleges and schools,
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
khaki, each with an automatic rifle. aftermath of a storm which
}\Ccor"aiflll to orders, the rifles never had hit the area afternoon. A
left their The roads are con- heavy overcast made ghostly shad-
standy patrolled by trigger- ows on the abOve
men. Wherever army is, the town.
you won't find Bengalis. ning to wet uniforms of
Martial law orders, re- Azhar and the four
peated on the radio and in the in the exposed escort
proclaim the death for any- We turned a corner and found
one in the act sabotage. a convoy of trucks parked outside
If a is obstructed or a bridge the mosque. I counted seven, all
damaged or destroyed, all houses filled with jawans in battledress. At
within 100 yards of the are the head of the column was a jeep.
liable to be demolished their Across the road two men, super-
inhabitants rounded up. vised by a third, were trying to
The practice is even more terrible batter down the door of one of
than anything the words could sug- more than a hundred shuttered
"Punitive action" is something shops lining the road. The studded
the Bengalis have come to teak wood door was beginning to
dread. give under the combined assault of
We saw what this meant when two axes as Major Rathore brought
we were approaching Hajiganj, the Toyota to a halt.
which straddles the road to Chand- "What the heIJ are you doing?"
pur, on the morning of April 17. The tallest of the trio, who was
A few miles before "Hajiganj. a 15- supervising the break-in, turned and
foot bridge had been damaged the peered at us. "Mota," (Fatty) he
previous night by rebels who were shomed, "what the hell do you
stiB active in the area. According to think we are doing?"
Major Rathore (G·2 Ops.) an army Recognizing the voice, Rathore
unit had immediately been sent out grew a water-melon smile. It was,
to take punitive action. Long spirals he informed me, his old friend
of smoke could be seen on all sides "Uty"-Major Utikhar of the J2th
up to a distance of a quarter of a Frontier Force Rifles.
mile from the damaged bridge. And Rathore: "I thought someone
as we carefully drove over a bed of was looting."
wooden boards. with which it had Iftikhar: "Looting? No. We are
been hastily repaired, we could see on kill and burn."
houses in the village on the right Waving his hand to take in the
beginning to catch fire. shops, he said he was going to
At the back of the village some destl'oy the lot.
jawaJU were spreading the flames Rathore: "How many did you
with dried coconut fronds. They get?"
make excellent kindling and are Iftikhar smiled bashftrlly.
normally used for cooking. We Rathore: "Come. on. How many
could also see a body sprawled be- did you get?"
tween the coconut trees at the en- Iftikhar: "Only twelve. And by
trance to the village. On the other God we were lucky to get them.
side of the road another in We would have lost those, too, if
the rice paddies showed evidence I hadn't .sent my men from the
of the fire that had gutted more back:'
than a dozen bamboo and mat huts. .Prodded .by Major Rathore, Ifti-
Hundreds of villagers had escaped khar then went on to describe
before the army came. Others, like vividly how after much searching
the man among the coconut trees, in Hajiganj he had "discovered
were slow to get away. twelve Hindus hiding in a house on
As we drove on, Major Rathore the outskirts of the town. These had
said, 1'bey brought it on them- been "disposed of." Now Major
selves." I said it was surely too ter· Iftikhar was on the second part of
rible a vengeance on innocent peo- his mission: burn.
pie for the acts of a handful of By this time the door had
rebels. He did not answer. been demolished we found
A FEW HOURS later when we ourselves looking into one of those
were passing through Haji· tiny catch-all establishments which,
On the way back from Chand- in these parts, go under the title
pur. I had my fint to the "Medical & Stores." Under the
savagery of a "kill and mis- Bengali the
sion." carried in the
We wem still up in the "Ashok Medical & Stores."
officer had a stint
after the India-Pakistan
when units of the Pakistan
were to Chinese
He was said to be a
family mao. He also loved
He told me with uncon-
cealed pride that a nfe:Vl()lJS
at Comilla he
the scarlet water-
lilies that adorn pond opposite
headquarters. Major Bashir adored
him. Extolling one officer's decisive-
ness, Bashir told me that once they
had caught a rebel officer there was
a big fuss about what should be
done with him. "While the others
were telephoning aU over for in-
structions," he said, "he solved the
problem. Dilor Only the
man's foot was sticking out of
the ditch."
IT IS HARD to imagine so much
brutality in the midst of so much
beauty. Comilla was blooming when
I went there towards the end of
April. The rich green carpet of rice
paddies spreading to the horizon on
both sides of the road was broken
here and there by bright splashes
of red. That was the Gal Mohor,
dubbed the "'Flame of the
.. coming to full bloom.
Mango and coconut trees in the
villages dotting the countryside
were heavy with fruit. Even the ter-
rier-siud goats skipping across the
road gave evidence of the abun-
dance of nature in Bengal. ""The
only way you can teU the male from
the female," they told me, "is that
aU the she·goats are pregnant:'
In one of the most crowded areas
of the entire worid-ComiUa dis-
trict has a population density of
1.900 to the square milc-<>nly man
was nowhere to be seen.
"Where are tbe Bengalis?" I had
asked my escorts in the strangely
empty streets of Dacca a few days
earlier. have to the vii·
.. was reply. Now,
countryside, there were still
no Comill a like
Dacca, was heavily And
in ten miles on the road to Lak-
Iham, past silent the peu-
ants I saw could have beeo counted
on the fingers of both hands.
There were, of course, soldiers-
hundreds of men in
officer found who could
fluently. By genera)
was also a self-
bore who in the
of his own
A dhari walla
we were told, come
Bashir that morning to
about his brother, a DfC)minellll
illa who
said told him: "he
" The old man couldn't
rnITlnrptlPn,!fi how his brother could
have escaped on a broken leg.
Neither could I. So Major Bashir,
with a broad wink, enlightened me.
The record would show Dhor
gaya: "shot while escaping."
I NEVER DID find out whether
Azmat got his kill. The
forces who had dug
miles north of
highway to
Comilla, had tied down the 9th
Division by destroying aU the
bridges and culverts in the area.
General Raz.a was getting hell from
Eastern Command at Dacca which
was anxious to have the south-
eastern border sealed against escap-
ing rebels. It was also desperately
urgent to open this only land route
to the north to much-needed sup-
plies that had been piling up in the
port at Chittagong.
So General Raza was understand-
waspish. He flew over the area
almost daily. He also spent houn
haranguing the brigade that was
bogged down at Feni. Captain Az-
mat, as usual, was the General's
s.hadow. I did not see him again.
But if experience is any pointer.
Azmat probably had to sweat out
his "km"-and the ragging-for
another three weeks. It was only
on 8 that the 9th Division was
able to dear Feni and the surround-
area. By then the Bengali rebels.
out by relentless bombing
llnd artillery barrages. had escaped
with their weapons across the neigh-
border into India.
of such large numbers
...r-nr". regulars among
rebels was a matter of
concern to U.-CoJ. Aslam
G-l at 9th Division head-
Indians," he ex-
wiU not allow
them to settle there. It would be too
oaC12CJrouS. So will be allowed
on sufferance as as they
making across the boi"-
we can them off, we
to have serious
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
old and
children, all
and at top of the
voices. Lt. Javed gave me a knowir
Within minutes the "parade" h41
into a "public con
with a make·shift
system and a
of Wr'IIlI,(1.r.....
- ur - Rahman
fon,,'ard to make the addrel
welcome to the He
himself as "N.F.
fessor of and
also for and is
IIIC:-LlIIIC member of the great
Introduction Mahbub·ur
gave forth with gusto
Villn."hu: and .. he said
united for and
our own traditions and culture
we were terrorised bv the Hin
and the A",.·ami . anc
led astray. Now we thai
thc Punhlbi soldiers have saved us
They are the best soldiers in the
world and heroes of humanit\'. We
love and respect them from th"c bot.
tom of our hearts." And SO on, in-
terminably. in the same vein.
Aftcr the "meeting" I asked the
\fajor what he thought about the
speech. "Senes the purpose." he
said. "but I don't Inlst that bastard.
I'll put him on my lis!."
THE AGONY of East Bengal is
not over. Perhaps the worst is yet to
come. The army is determined to
go on until the "c1ean-up" is com·
plete. So far the job is onl\' half
done. Two divisions of the
Army, the 9th and the 16th. were
flown out from West Pakistan to
"sort out" the Bengali rebels and the
Hindus. This was a considerable
logistical feat for a country of Paki-
stan's resources. More than 25,000
men were moved from the west to
the east. On ,March 28 the two divi-
sions were given 48 hours notice to
move. They were brought by Irain
to Karachi from Kharian and l\lul-
tan. Carrying only light bed rolls
and battle packs (their equipment
was to follow by sea) the troops
were flown out to Dacca by PIA,
the national airline. Its fleet of seven
Boeings was taken off international
and domestic routes and flew the
long haul via Ceylon continuously
for 14 days. A few Air Force trans-
port 41ircraft helped.
The troops went into action im-
mediately with equipment borrowed
from the 14th Division which till
then constituted the Eastern Com-
mand. The 9th Division, operating
Laksham 'was an example of the
reaction: cringing.
\\'hen I drove into the town the
morning after it had been cleared
of the rebels, all I could see was
the army and literally thousands of
Pakistani flags. The major in charge
there had camped in the police sta·
tion, and it was there that Major
Rathore took us. My colleague, a
Pakistani TV cameraman had to
make a propaganda film about the
"return to normalcv" in Laksham-
one of the endless' series broadcast
daily showing welcome parades and
"peace meetings."
I wondered hnw he could manage
it, but the Major it would be
no sweat. "There arc enough of
these baslards left to put on good
show. Give me :2,0 minutes."
Lieutenant Javed of the 39th
Baluch was assigned the task of
rounding up a crowd. He called out
to an elderly bearded man who had
apparently been brought in for
questioning. The man, who later
gave his name as !\loulana Said
Mohammad Saidul Hug, insisted he
was a "staunch Muslim Leaguer
and not from the Awami League."
(The l\fuslim League led the move-
ment for an Independent Pakistan
in 1947.) He was all loa eager to
please. "I \viII very definitely get
you at least 60 men in 20.minutes,"
he told Javed. "But if you give me
two hours I will bring 200."
Moulana Saidul Huq was as good
as his word. We had hardly drunk
our fill of the deliciously refreshing
coconut milk that had been thought·
fully .supplied by the Major when
he heard shouts in the distance.
"Pakistan zindabad!" "Pakistan
army zindabad!" "Muslim League
zindabad!" they were chanting.
(Zindabad is Urdu for "Long live!")
Moments later they marched into
a motley crowd of about 50
down rebels had been cleared
Bose." with the freedom 10 corno-om
Ihe Hindus and
and run. (the jargon for rebels)
In front of to bum down in
display cabinet was crammed with areas from which army
palenl medicines, been fired at.
some bottles of This lanky
talion to talk about his
cotton Iftikhar to the
er elastic. Iftikhar kicked it over, Camilla on another occasion he
smashing the light woodwork into told me aboul his latest exploit.
kindling. Next he reached out for "We gal an old one," he said.
'some jute shopping bags on one "The bastard had grown a beard
shelf. He look some plastic toys and was posing as a devout Muslim.
from another. A bundle of hand- called himself Abdul Manan.
kerchiefs and a small bolt of red But we him a medical inspec-
cloth joined the on the floor. tion the game was "
Iftikhar all together Iftikhar continued: wanted to
and a box from one of finish him Ihere and then. but my
Ihe jawons in our Toyota. men told me such a bastard de·
The jah'an had of his own. served three sholS. So I ga.... e him
Jumping from Ihe vehicle he ran to, one in the halls, then one in the
the shop and tried to pull down one stomach. Then I finished him off
of the umbrellas hancing from the with a in the head,"
low ceiling of the shop. {ftikhar or· \\'hen I left Major Iftikhar he
dered him out. was headed north to Brahmanbaria.
Looting. he was sharply re- His mission: another kill and burn.
minded, was against orders. OVERWHELMED \'lITH TER-
Iftikhar soon had a fire going. ROR. the Bengalis have one of two
He thre\ll burning jute bags into reactions. Those who can n1n awav
one corner of the shop. the bolt just seem to vanish. Whole town's
of cloth into another. The shop have been abandoned as the armv
began to blaze. Within minutes we approached. Those who can'l
could hear the crackle of flames adopt a cringing servility which
behind shuttered doors as the fire only ados humiliation to their
spread to the shop on the left, then plight.
on to the next one. Chandpur was an example of the
At this point Rathore was begin- firs!.
ning to get anxious about the gath· In the past this key river port
ering darkness, So we drove on. on the was noted for its
When I chanced to meet Major thriving business houses and gay
Iftikhar the next day he ruefully life. At night thousands of small
told me, "I burnt only sixty houses. country boats anchored on the
If it hadn't rained I would have got river's edge made it a fain'land of
the whole bloody lot." lights. April 18 Chand"pur was
Approaching a village a few miles deserted. No people, no boats.
from 1\1udarfarganj we were forced Barely one per cent of the popu);].
to a halt by what appeared to be a tion had remained. The rest, par·
man crouching against a mud wall. ticularly the Hindus who consti·
One of the jall'ans warned it might tuted nearly half the pouulation,
be a jauji sniper, But after careful had fled.
scouting it turned out to be a lovely Weirdly they had left behind
young Hindu girl. She sat there with thousands of Pakistani flags flutter·
the placidity of her people, waiting ing from every house, shop and
for God knows who. One of the rooftop. The effect was like a
jall'ons had been ten years with the tional day celebration without the
East Pakistan Rifles and could crowds. It only served to emphasise
speak bazaar Bengali. He was told the haunted look.
to order her into the village. She The flags were by way of
mumbled something in reply, but insurance.
stayed where she was, but was or- Somehow the word had gal
dered a second time. She was still around that the army considered
sitting there as we drove away. "She any structure without a Pakistani
has," I was informed, "nowhere to flag to be hostile and consequently
go-no family, no home." to be destroyed. It did not matter
Major Iftikhar was one of several how the Pakistani flags were made,
officers assigned to kill and burn so long as they were adorned with
missions. They moved in after the the crescent and star. So they came
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
at Comilla on 16.
"You must absolutely sure,"
he said, "that we have not under-
taken such a drastic and expensive
operation-expensive both in men
and money-for nothing. We've
undertaken a job. We are going to
finish it, not hand it over half done
10 the politicians so that they can
mess it up again. The army can't
keep coming back like this every
three or four years. It has a more
important task. I assure you that
when we have got through with
what we are doing there will never
be need again for such an opera-
Major-General Shaubt Raza is
one of the three divisional com-
manders in the field. He is in a
key position. He is not given to
talking through his hat.
Significantly, General Shaubt
Raza's ideas were echoed by every
military ot1icer I l:llked to during
my 10 days in East Bengal. And
President Tahya Khan kno..l,s that
the men who lead the troops on the
ground are the cit' facto arbiters
of Pakistan's destiny.
The single-mindedness of the
army is underscored by the mili-
tary operation itself. By any stand-
ard, it is a major venture. It is not
something that can be switched on
and off without the most grave con-
The army has already laken a
terrible toll in dCJd and injured.
It was privately said in Dacca that
more officers have been killed than
men and' that the casualty list in
East already exceeds the
losses in India-Pakistan war of
September, 1965. The army will cer-
tainly not write off these "sacrifices"
for illusory political considerations
that have proved to be so worthless
in the past.
Militarily-and it is soldiers who
wiU be taking the decision-to call
a halt to the operation at this stage
would be indefensible. It would
only mean more trouble with the
Bengali rebels. Implacable hatred
has been displayed on both sides.
There can be no truce or negotiated
total victory or
answer total defeat. is on the side
Raa, of the Pakistan Army. not of the
of the 9th isolated, unco-ordinated and ill-
first meeting I rebel groups. Other cir-
On the one hand, it is true that
there is no let up in the reign of
terror. The policy of subjugation is
certainly being pursued with vigour
in East Bengal. This is making thou-
sands of new enemies for the Gov-
ernment every day and making only
more definitive the separation of the
two wings of Pakistan.
On the other hand, no govern-
ment could be unaware that this
policy must fail (There are just not
enough West Pakistanis to hold
down the much greater numbers in
East Bengal indefinitely.) For hard
administrative and economic rea-
sons, and because of the crucial con-
sideration of external development
assistance, especially from America,
it will be necessary to achieve a poli-
tical settlement as quickly as pos-
sible. President Yahya Khan's Press
conference on May 25 suggests that
he acknowledges the force of these
factors: And he said he would an-
nounce his plan for representative
government in the middle of June.
All this would seem to indicate
that Pakistan's military Govern-
ment is moving paradoxically, in
opposite directions, to compound
the gravest crisis in the country's
24-year history.
This is a widely held view. It
sounds logical. But is it true?
My own view is that it is not. It
has been my unhappy privilege to
have had the opportunity to observe
at first hand both what Pak.istan's
leaders say in the West, and ",-'hat
they are doing in the East.
I think that in reality there is no
contradiction in the Government's
East Bengal policy. East Bengal is
being colonised.
This is not an arbitrary opinion
of mine. The facts speak for them-
The first consideration of the
army has been and still is the ob-
literation of every trace of separa-
tism in East Bengal. This proposi-
tion is upheld by the continuing
slaughter and by everything else
that the Government has done in
both East and West Pakistan since
March 25. The decision was coldly
taken by the military leaders, and
they are going through with it-all
too coldly.
No meaningful or viable political
solution is possible in East Bengal
while the pogrom continues.
The crucial question is: will the
not be this year because
of the war. Six major bridges
and thousands of smaller ones have
been making the roads
impassable many places. The
railway system has been similarly
disrupted, though the Government
claims it is "almost normal."
- The road and ·rail tracks between
the port of Chittagong and the north
have been completely disrupted by
the rebels who held Feni, a key road
and rail junction, until May 7. Food
stocks cannot move because of this
devastation. In normal times only
15 per cent of food movements from
Chittagong to upcountry areas were
made by boat. The remaining 85
cent was moved by road and
Even a 100 per cent increase in the
effectiveness of river movement will
leave 70 per cent of the food stocks
in the warehouses of Chittagong.
Two other factors must be added.
One is large-scale hoarding of grain
by people who have begun to antici-
pate the famine. This makes a tight
position infinitely more difficult.
The other is the Government of
Pakistan's refusal to acknowledge
the danger of famine publicly. Lt.-
Gen. TikkJ Khan. the .\filitary Gov-
ernor of East Bengal, acknowledged
in a radio broadcast on April 18 that
he was gravely concerned about
food supplies. Since then the entire
Government machinery has been
used to suppress the fact of the food
shortage. The reason is that a fam-
ine, like the cyclone before it, could
result in a massive outpouring of
foreign aid-and with it the prospect
of external inspection of distribution
methods. That would make it im-
possible to conceal from the world
the scale of the pogrom. So the hun-
gry will be left to die until the clean-
up is complete.
Discussing the problem in his
plush air-conditioned office in Kara-
chi recently the chairman of the
Agricultural Development Bank,
Mr Qarni, said bluntly: "The fam-
ine is the result of their acts of sabo-
So let them die. Perhaps then
Bangalis will come to their
THE MILITARY Government's
East policy is so apparently
contradictory and self-defeating
that it would seem to justify the
assuIT1Ption that the men who rule
Pakistan cannot make up their
minds. committed the initial
error of to force, the Gov.
emment, on-this view; is stubbornly
and stupidly through.
There logic in
this rea:son.mg.
from Comilla, was ordered to seal
the border in the east against the
movement of rebels and their
plies. The 16th Division, with
quarters at Jessore, had a similar
task in the Western sector of the
They completed these as-
the third week of May.
ret)el:i-[fi()Se who have not
to India-boxed
in a ring of and fire, the two
army divisions are beginning to con-
verge in a relentless comb-out op-
eration. This will undoubtedly mean
that the terror experienced in the
border areas will now spread to the
middle. It could also be more pain-
ful. The human targets will have
nowhere to run to.
On April 20 Lt.-Col. Baig, the
Hower-loving G-! of the 9th Divi-
sion. thought that the comb-out
"vould take two months, to the
middle of June. But this planning
seems to have misfired. The rebel
forces, using guerrilla tactics, have
not been subdued as easily as the
army expected. Isolated and appar-
ently unco-ordinated, the rebels
have nonetheless bogged down the
Pakistan Army in many places by
the systematic destruction of roads
and raihvays, without which the
army cannot move. The 9th Divi-
sion for one was hopelessly behind
schedule. Now the mOnsoon threat-
ens to shut down the military opera-
tion with three months of cloud-
For the rainy season, the Pakistan
Government obtained from China
in the second week of May nine
shallow-draught river gunboats.
More are to come. These 80-ton
gunboats with massive fire-power
will lake over some of the respon-
sibilities hitherto allotted to the air
force and artillery, which will not
as effective when it rains. They
will be supported by several hun-
dred which have been
and convened for mil.
use by the addition of out-
The army intends to
take to the wat« in pursuit of the
There is also the dear nN'Knol"rf
fami ne, because of
of the distribution system.
Seventeen of the 23 districts of East
Pakistan are short of food
and have to be massive
of rice will
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Cl1lau,dluuy and
Azam, of Jamat Islami,
all of whom were soundly beaten in
the General Elections last Decem-
to emerge
Mr. Nurul Amin, an Muslim
and former Chief Minister
Province who was one of
two non-Awami Leaguers to
be to the National Assembly.
He is now in his seventies. But even
Nurul Armin has been careful not
to be too effusive. His two public
statements to date have been con-
cerned only with the uIndian in-
Bengalis look with scorn on the
few who "collaborate." Fll.rid
Ahmad and FazIul Quadeer Chad·
hury are painfull}' aware of this
Farid Ahmad makes a point of
keeping his windows shuttered and
only those who have been scruti-
nised and recognised through a
peephole in the front door are al·
lowed into the house.
By singularly blunt methods the
Government has been able to
a grudging acquiescence from 1
Awami Leaguers who had been
elected to the national and provin-
cial assemblies. They are being kept
on ice in Dacca, secluded from all
but their immediate families, for
the big occasion when "representa-
tive government" is to be installed.
But dearly th'ey now represent no
one but themselves.
ABDUL BARI the tailor who
was lucky to survive, is 24 years
old. That is the same age as Pakis-
tan. The army can of course hold-
the country together by force. But
the meaning of what it has done in
East Bengal is that the dream of the
men who hoped in 1947 that they
were founding a Muslim nation in
two equal parts has now faded.
There is now little chance for a
long time to come that Punjabis in
the West and Bengalis in the East
will feel themselves equal fellow-
citizens of one nation. For the Ben-
galis, the future is now bleak: the
unhappy submission of a colony to
commaSSloners win in
Biharis or civil of-
ficers from West Pakistan. The
commissioners of the dis-
were said to be too
involved with the Awami League
secessionist movement. In some
cases, such as that of the
commissioner of Comilla ,
and shot. That of·
incurred the wrath of the
on March 20 when he re-
to requisition and food
supplies ''without a letter from
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman."
The Government has also come
down hard on the universities and
of East were
the hot con-
and they are
fled. Some have
will be replaced by
men! from West Pakistan.
Bengali officers are also being
weeded ou! of sensitive positions in
the Civil and Foreign Services. All
are currently being subjected to the
most exhaustive screening.
This colonisation process, quite
obviously does not work even half
as efficiently as the administration
wishes. I was given vivid evidence
of this by Major Agha, martial law
administrator of Comilia, He had
been having a problem getting the
local Bengali executive engineers to
go out and repair the bridges and
roads that had been destroyed or
damaged by the rebels. This task
k.ept getting snarled in red tape, and
the bridges remained unrepaired.
Agha of course, knew the reason.
"You can't expect them to work.,'·
he told me, "when you have been
killing them and destroying their
country. That at least is their point
of view, and we are paying for it."
Baluch Regiment, who was in
charge of the company guarding the
Comilla airport, had his own
methods of dealing with the prob-
lem. "I have told them," he said
with reference to the Bengalis main-
taining the control tower, "that I
will shoot anyone who even looks
like he is doing something suspi-
cious." Ducanni had made good his
word. A Bengali who had ap-
proached the airport a few nights
earlier was shot. "Could have been
a rebel," T was told. Durrani had
another claim to fame. He had per-
sonally accounted for "more than
60 men" while clearing the villages
surrounding the airport.
The .harsh of colonisation
in the East is concealed by
I was told that aU the commis-
ioners of East Bengal and the dis-
will have to be
of the
the official
jargon - is intended to eliminate
secessionist tendencies and
a strong bond
When the Hindus have been
by death and IDght,
property will be used as a
carrot to win over the under-
Muslim middle..dass.
provide the base for erect..
that the administrative and
taken a structures in the future.
has This is being pursued with
as a the utmost
investment. It was not Because of
that 25,000 soldiers been
to East a dar.. will not for present be any fur-
ing and expensive These ther recruitment of Bengalis in the
two divisions, the 9th and the 16th, defence forces. Senior Air Force
constituted the military reserve in and Navy officers, who were not in
'Vest Pakistan. They have now been anyway involved, have been moved
replaced there by new re- "as a precaution" to nonsensitive
cruitmenl. positions. Bengali fighter pilots,
The Chinese have helped with among them some of the aces of the
equipment, which is pouring down Air Force, had the humiliation of
the Karakorum highway. There is being grounded and moved to non-
some evidence that the flood is flying duties. Even PIA air crews
slowing down: perhaps the Chinese operating between the two wings of
are having second thoughts about the country have been strained
their commitments to the military clean of Bengalis.
rulers of Pak.istan. But the Pakistan The East Pakistan Rilles, once
government has not hesitated to Ialmost exclusively a Bengali
pay cash from the bottom of the . para-military force, has ceased to
foreign exchange barrel for more exist since the mutiny. A new force,
than SI-million-worth of ammuni· the Civil Defence Force, has been
tion to European arms suppliers, raised by recruiting Biharis and vol-
Conversations with senior mili- unteers from West Pakistan.
tary officers in Dacca, Rawalpindi Biharis, instead of Bengalis, are also
and Karachi confirm that they see being used as the basic materia! for
the solution to this problem in the the police. They are supervised by
speedy completion of the East Ben- officers sent out from West Pakistan
gal operation, not in terms of a pull. and by secondment from the army.
out. The money required for that The new superintendent of police at
purpose now takes precedence over Chandpur at the end of April was
al: other governmental expenditure. a military police major.
Development has virtually come to Hundreds of West Pakistani
a halt. Government civil servants, doctors,
In one sentence, the government and technicians for the radio,1\',
is too far committed militarily to telegraph and telephone services
abandon the East Bengal operation, have already been sent out to East
which it would have to do if it Pakistan. More are being en-
sincerely wanted a political solu- couraged to go with the promise of
tion. President Yahya Khan is rid- one and two-step promotions. But
ing on the back of a tiger. But he the transfer, when made, is obliga-
took a calculated decision to climb tory. President Yahya recently is-
up there. sued an order making it possible to
SO THE ARMY is not going to civil .to part
pull out. The Government's policy of Pakistan agamst their wIll.
for East Bengal was spelled out to
me in the Eastern Command head-
quarters at Dacca. It has three
( 1) The Bengalis have
themselves "unreliable" must
be ruled by West Pakistanis;
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
through the innocent eyes of Anne
Frank or Solzhenitsyn's famous
Ivan Denisovich.
Hiroshima and Nagasaki are
vividly remembered by the mind's
eye primarily because of the novel
means that brought holocaust to
those cities. Statistically compar-
able disasters in Hamburg and
Dresden are more easily forgotten;
they were produced by what we al-
ready then conceived of as "con-
ventional" methods.
Against this background one must
view the appalling catastrophe of
East Pakistan whose scale is so im-
mense that it exceeds the dolori-
meter capacity by which human
svrnnattllV is measured. No one can
to count the wounded,
homeless or whose
grows each day...."
forced at gunpOint
the others
3) Professor C. C. Dev,
head of the Departm,ent
of Phllo.sO[lhv was ..... "'...... t, ... t1
his home to an
4) The last names of other fac-
members who were killed or
""",.'n""",, wounded: in the
Munium, The
.1.1111<1:><'111. Ali. Dacca was
5) Central government 10) On the
forced their way into Flat D forty soldiers a
Building 34 at the university, seized named Barda, rounded up the
Professor Muniru Zaman, his son, population (approximately 6(0)
his brother (employed by the East and marched them at to
Pakistan High Court). and his Gulshan Park, where were
nephew, and marched the group to interrogated. Ten members of the
the first-floor foyer, where they were group were then taken off; their
machine-gunned. fate is unknown.
6) A machine gun was installed The foregoing a small
on the roof of the terminal building fraction of the IlC·
at Sadarghat, the dod area of Old counts that in the aggregate tell of
Dacca. On March 26, all civilians v.'ide-spread killings, especially of
within range were fired upon. After youth and educated people. It is
the massacre, the bodies were futile to attempt to estimate the
dragged into buses. Some were number of dead or wounded. Each
dumped into the Buriganga River, city and village has its own tales
adjacent to the terminal. of horror. It is significant that the
7) On the morning of I\larch 28, government at Islamabad, until
machine guns were placed at OP-jl only last week, enforced vigorous
posite ends of Shandari Bnnar, a Imeasures to keep au! reponers...."
Hindu artisan center in old Dacca, -N.C.
When the ancient Greeks said
"multiple death is not death" they
meant that death's qualitative agony
could be drowned in quantitative
shock. The hecatomb loses poig-
nancy compared to the single suc-
cumbing marathon victor's pain.
Classical times could never com-
A few documented episodes: prehend from the sheer absence of
1) Tanks and soldie,rs with sub- mass, the ultimate meaning of
machine guns and grenades seized multiple death as it was to become
Dacca University early in the morn- known in a later era of instant
ing on March 26. All students communication. Yet even in recent
residing in Iqbal Hall, the dormitory times, dying is not acutely under-
center, were put to death. The build- stood when its scope transcends
ing was gutted by shells from tanks. certain limits.
2) One hundred and three Hindu The leaden horror of Hitlerite
students ,residing in Jagannath Hall and Stalinist concentration
of Dacca University were shot to recedes into a coma of human
death. Six Hindu students were, comprehension unless regarded
'<The most fundamental of all and resources would have been
rights - the of a man to come Southern The result
to the aid of a human would have been an administrative,
is now denied with a degree of and economic shambles.
official arrogance seldom in Pakistan
in recent roughly fits Fur-
The people East Pakistan, who ther compounding the are
are still suffering from homeless- the severe cultural and historic dif-
ness and hunger caused by the tidal ference! between (West)
waves of Jess than a year are and ( East)
now up in a' dis- For a time, the peoples of East
aster. land has become a and West Pakistan were held to-
locked-in arena of gether the spiritual and
slaughter. Communications with the of a new nationalism.
outside world have been reduced But the underlying difficulties grew
almost to the vanishing point. more pronounced and visible year
Those who have offered by year. The people of East Pakis-
medical aid or other help have tan chafed under what they felt
told to stay was West Pakistan's latter-day ver-
The present situation has its re- sian of British colonialism. They
mote origins in the division of the claimed the)' were not being repre-
Indian subcontinent into two na- scnted in proportion to their num-
tions in 1947. The movement for bers in either high posts or poli-
independence from Great Britain cies of government. They charged
had been complicated and imperiled Ithey were being exploited econom-
by the existence of Hindu and Mas- ically, furnishing labor and re-
lem blocs, Great Britain had fost- sources without sharing fairly in the
ered the concept of a partitioned profits from production. They
subcontinent in which India would pointed to the sharp disparity in
be predominantly Hindu and Pak- wages and living conditions between
istan would be predominantly ,Mas- East and West.
!em. For a long time, Ga.n.dhi and It was inevitable that the disaffec-
partitIOn, be- tion should reach an eruptive stage.
It ImperatIve for both -re- There is no point here in detailing
to be the facts attending the emergence of
":'Ithm a SlI"I.fd
large de-, political movements seeking self.
and .Withdrew rule for East Pakistan. All that need
theIr oPPosl.tlOn to how- be said is that the central govern-
eve,r, wh:n It appeared that ment at Islamabad finally did agree
might other· to submit self-rule propositions to
wIse be m.definltely the East Pakistan electorate, The re-
The for partition called for suI! of the general election was an
nations. Actually, na- overwhelming vote in favor of self.
. .. was rule.' The central government at
pa11Jtloned wllhm Itself, mto East Islamabad not only failed to re-
and West. The. Western part was spect this popular decision, but or-
larger and became dered in armed troops to forestall
the capItal. The pa0 was implementation. The official slaugh-
more populous ncher In re- ter began on March 26th.
sources. The Units lay more than
1,000 miles apart.
In order to comprehend the geo-
graphical anomaly this physical
separation represented, one has only
to imagine what would have hap-
pened if Maine and Georgia had de-
cided to form a separate nation,
Maorgia, with practically the whole
of the United States lying in be-
tween. Let us further suppose that
the capital of the new nation would
have been Augusta, Northern
while most of the peo-
Courtesy of MMR Jalal

Bengali in Pakii'tan: ·Ch·ilized me n cannot de:-cribe the horror that been done'
Bengal: The Murder of a People
It samed a routine t'f1O/I.!!}, re-
qunt, AS,H'ml>ling tht' young men of
tht' \'illage oj flaluaghat in East
Pakistan. a Pakistani Army major
injurnud thl'm that his wounded
soldias urgt'fltly nuded blood.
Would they he donors:' The young
men lay down on makeshift cots,
llt'fdles wac inserted in their
\'eins - alld thell slowly thl' blood
was drained jrom their bodies umil
they dir(!.
GOl'indo Chandramandl jorgets
who told him first. but when he
heard that an amnest\' had bcen
pledged to all rejugecs: he immedi-
ately set off on the long H'alk home.
IVilh his two tecn-ar::e daur::hlcrs hv
his side, lrudged
Ihrough monsooll-drellched swamp-
lands and past bUrtled-ollt \'illages.
Whcn he neared his scrap of land,
soldiers stopped him. As he watched
in helpless anguish, his daughters
were raped - again and again and
He was about 3 years old, and
his mother was still in her teens.
The\' sat on ground made muddY
by t)/e steady drizzle oj Ihe
rains. The baby's stomach was
grotesquely his feet swol-
len, his arm no thicker than a man's
finger. His mother tried to coax him
to eat some rice and dried fish.
Finally, the baby mourhed the food
feebly, wheezed - and died.
... With the passing of time, the
m:lgnitude of the slaughter has
diminished, but there has been no
lessening in the bmtality of the Pak·
istani Army. Last week. NEWS-
\VEH:'S Loren Jenkins. who was in
Dacca the night that Gen, Tikka
Khan's troops launched their cam-
paign of murder, cabled the follow.
ing report on conditions in East
Pakistan now:
Four months after the first flush
of bloodletting. East Pakistan still
lives in fear. But instead of being
the cowering. groveling feJr that
the army sought to instill. it is a
sullen fear tinged with quiet de-
fiance and hate. It is a fear based
on the appreci:1tion of a very harsh
reality, not a fear that marks peo-
ple of broken spirit Walking along
a Dacca street recently, I met a
journalist I had known before. Our
eyes met and he nodded, but he ap-
peared embarrassed. Glancing nerv-
ously all around. he muttered, "My
God, my God. Civilized man can-
not describe the horror that has been
done." An hour later another
friend explained: "We have been
orde·red not to talk to foreign jour-
nalists. We are scared. We live in
terror of the midnight knock on the
door. So many people have been
killed. So many more have disap-
peared. And more vanish every
One who vanished in the night
was Mujib, who is now reportedly
held in prison in the western gar-
rison town of Mianwali. A hero be-
fore, Mujib has now become a
martyr. For all his conspicuous
faults, he has become the symbol
of Bengali patriotism. Yet Yahya,
almost boastfully, told a recent
visitor, "My generals are pushing
for a military trial for Mujib and
for his execution, I have agreed and
the trial will be held soon." No
policy could be more short-sighted
or more likely to harden Bengalire-
sistance. As one Western diplomat
told me, "Yahya is simply out of
his mind. He still doesn't even un-
derstand what the army has done.
He thinks they can kill off a couple
of hundred thousand people, try
Mujib for treason, force a return to
order and all will be forgotten. This
is utter nonsense. These people will
not forget. ,.
Guerrilla Resistance
Indeed, the minds of Bengalis are
emblazoned with the memories of
these months of terror. Despite the
terror, signs of resistance to the
army creep up everywhere. In
Dacca, street urchins hawking the
local papers slip mimeographed
communiques from the govern-
ment-in-exile into the newspapers.
On ferry boats in the countryside.
where all passengers are under the
watchful eyes of the anny, strang-
ers sidle up and whisper of mas-
sacres or point out areas in the
dense Madhupur jungle where the
"Mukti Bahini," or Liberation
Army, is hiding. All over the coun·
try, the resistance is rapidly taking
on the earmarks of a classic guer·
rilla terrain reminiscent of South
Vietnam's Mekong Delta - a laby-
rinth of sunken paddies, jute fields
and banana groves.
That the Mukti Bahini are cap-
italizing on their few assets is
brought home daily. They have cut
the key railroad to Dacca from the
port of Chittagong and have also
severed the parallel road. More
than 60 per cent of the interior's
food supplies moves over those
routes and there is virtually no pros-
pect of restoring them until peace
is also restored. The rebels' recent
coup in blowing up three power
stations in Dacca has underscored
the point that no city or village is
safe from their campaign to bring
the economy to a halt. Most im-
portant, however, is the fact that
the rebels now seem to be winning
what every guerrilla needs - the
support of the populace. Two
months ago, villagers in Noakhali
province pleaded with the Mukti
Bahini not to blow up a bridge be-
cause it would bring army retalia-
tion. Last week, those same villag-
ers sought out the guerrillas and
asked them to destroy the bridge ....
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
22, 1971 THE DAILY NEWS, JUNE 1971
The strongest evidence is that 5
million East Pakistanis have taken
the terrible decision to abandon
their homes and have fled on foot
across the border into India. This
starving, choiera-ridden mass is
being augmented by 100.000 terri-
fied refugees each day.
If things are now "normal" in
East Pakistan, as Yahya Khan's
gauleiters claim, why are new refu-
gees still inundating India and ear-
lier ones refusing to go home .... ?'
·'Eyewitness reports, one more
ghastly than another. continue to
filter out of East Pakistan, telling
of the massacre of the Bengali peo-
ple by the Pakistani army.
the military regime of
President Yahya Khan denies it is
committing selective genocide. But
evidence mounts that it is cold-
bloodediy murdering minority Hin-
dus. Bengali separatists, intellec-
tuals, doctors. professors. students-
in short, those who could lead a
self-governing East Pakistan.
security reasons, I will men-
no names) on the
organization of resistance in
"Yes", he: said, "the libera-
tion of Desh is or-
ganized; yes, it its visitors
in Bengali territory". I do not men·
tion my doubts to him; it is not the
day to do so. Anyway, when a
situation is desperate, it appears that
it is known as the dawn. In the
meantime, the long night is not
over: a million who were
punished for misfortune by
extermination of their vital forces.
No, no, the Pakistanis do not want
to kill all of us. my interlocutor
corrects me; they have just a five-
point programme: do with
Bengla Dcsh. the Awami
the students, the worlel' and pro-
" ... During these accounts of
which I havc made a summary, I
put only onc question:
"At the most, I can understand
that repression can be conceived
as a means to rule, but why this re-
fined cruelty, why this systematic
extermination? In any case the Pak-
istanis cannot hope to wipe out the
Bengali people...."
"They wanted to terrorize us."
the young girl said.
'They do not wish to kill the peo-
ple," the man replied. "They want
beggars to live".
There are three of them. A man,
in his forties with the
natural of the in-
habitants of the sub-continent. And
two young girls, one sixteen, frail
and slender whose dark
flashes; the other: a child thir-
teen. But her childhood ended on
the of March 25-26.
arc three among the one
and fifty Bengalis who
demonstrated silently in
front of the World Bank
v. here a loan to Pakistan is being
negotiated at present. Pakistan has
economic problem: the genocide is
costing it (tx) much... :.
\Vc know of\ly too well what is
happening in Bengal, thanks to the
accounts that were published in the
daily press, and particularly in the
Ang()-Saxon newspapers which re-
strict professional
do not allow a genocide to pass
under silence because it is taking
place 10.000 kilometres from their
frontiers, or because the price of
carrots has gone up.
The Flies and the Stench
interlocutros did not come to
see me to talk politics. Through a
kind of inherent defect of which I
am now ashamed, I asked the man

shelter from the blistering' with immense personal sympathy,
sun the torrential rain. I saw to cope with the human tidal wave-
refugees still streaming along the and to do so on a budget of one
roads unable to find even a resting rupee a day - about 13 cents per
place. I saw miserable Indian vii· human.
lagers sharing their meager food It is now clear that famine will
with the latest frightened and further devastate East Pakistan
hungry arrivals. I saw thousands this fall, and that millions more will
of men, women and babies lined up, seek refuge in an India already
waiting patiently under the sun for staggering under the burden....
hours to get their rations. These
pitiful few ounces of rice, wheat
and dahl provide a level of nutri·
tion so low that it will inevitably
create protein breakdown, liver ill-
ness, and a variety of other dis-
eases in addition to the cholera,
pneumonia, bronchitis that are al-
ready rampant. I saw Indian relief
officials struggling aod
culated campaign to decimate
them or to drive them out of their
villages and over the border into
Part of the time I traveled with a
Canadian parliamentary delegation.
We saw babies skin stretched tight,
bones protruding, weeping women
who told us they would rather die
today in India than return to East
Pakistan after the tragedies they
had witnessed, total wretchedness
of refugee camps, and the unbe·
lievable magnitude of this forced
human migration - 6.7 million
refugees pouring into India within
a matter of four months.
I saw Indian villages deluged by
masses of destitute
available inch crammed
BY Atvl1\' TOFFLER, Author
A planetary catastrophe is taking
place in Asia, a human disaster so
massive that it could bathe the fu-
ture in blood, not just for Asians,
but for those of us in the West as
well. Yet the response of the global
community has been minimal at
I have just ·returned from Cal-
cutta and the border of East Pakis-
tan, where I conducted interviews
with refugees avalanching into
India as a result of the West Pakis-
tani's genocidal attack on them.
Since March 25, West Pakistani
troops have bombed, burned, looted
and murdered the citizens of East
Pakistan in what can only be a cal-
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
JUNE 1971
tions and
The e ! e . c u c ~ n s . which were honest and demo
resul ted in the of Sheikh
Rahman and his There were two democratic al
tematives to take either to transfer Pakistan inu
a federal union in which the eastern section will b
headed Sheikh Mujib as Prime and it
western section Mr. who won the electionJ
or Pakistan to remain in its fonner form and th.
winner of of votes in
Sheikh to become the Prime l\1inister. None
the two alternatives was followed. Those who have powel
in their in West have instead resorted tc
the force of arms instead of to the \\111 of the and
thus there was catastrophe.
The was iliat the army was to crush the seces·
sionists. In East Pakistan did not incline towards
secession except when it was to her that the
in the country did not depend on the will of the
but on the will of the domineering group,
one thousand miles away. Who approves of v.ithin
such a country? Whatever the case may it has been
certified that Pakistan's entity in the form wanted by its
founders and supporters, is not fit to remain. It is an
artificial construction and any artificial is doomed
to vanish.
"Yahya Khan has claimed that the are pre-
vented by India from returning to East Pakistan. It is
a fact that Yahya Khan's claim is not true. India has
tried its best to facilitate the return of the refugees to
their homeland. Now we are having the question:
do not the refugees want to go back? The answer can
be the recent happenings in East All world news
coverage shows that there had been in the
region. The of journalists, whose impartiali ty
cannot be questioned, were horrifying. Perhaps Yahya
Khan has secured order by killing the people who
claimed their rights. But now East Bengal is being
abandoned. Khan's methods have come to a
of no return....
"The and re-
sulted in the insecurity of life and of the peo-
ple and them of their freedom. these
people hunger, and cholera to
their own homeland."
Mohammed Nakkah
Had the late Mr. Mohammed Ali Jinnah come to life
and see what is in Pakistan and in what
way his dream is true, would he be
and or what he had done?
Five million Pakistanis from East have fled
from Mohammed Ali Jinnah's heaven after if'
cnanll2 into hell for them . . . have Bed to West
India. enemy to
theirs. . . in tents
or in the open rather than in their homes.
even and cholera to death in the
hands of their ... and the enemy opened its
arms to them in of space for its own
This is some of the fruits Muslims out of a
Muslim country improvised for them by Mohammed Ali
Jinnah and his supporters. It is the embodiment of evi-
dence that the element of religion cannot be the base for
foundation of a state. It is geography (land and
neighbours), language and a suitable regime which are
the strongest foundations. Pakisumi Bengalis found
refuge and shelter with Indian Bengalis, while they
found fire and gunshots from their co-citizens - West
As for religious emotions and traditions, are cap-
able of development. How often dissensions (due to hu-
man partiality) have taken place within one religion.
There is not one evidence that religion was ever a divid-
ing fence between peoples, such as the existence of two
or more religions in one country, region or area. The
Indian sub-continent itself is an example to that ever
since ancient times.
The dispute, "",...""",,",01"
ent religions in one is not always more
dangerous and more violent than disputes which some-
times divide members of one religion.
In any case, we do not believe (according to our his-
torical knowledge) that Hindus have killed in a few
weeks Muslims (or vice versa), as Pakistanis have killed
their brother Pakistanis in the last few weeks. For, ac-
""", ..nlT1'''' to reports, civil war resulted in the death of
300,000 This is apart from the caused to
the foundation of Pakistan which is hard (if not
sible) to What is the fault of East Pakistan peo-
The President of Pakistan told them to have elec-
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
In the meantime the influx of has an
enormous burden on and added to the emotional
and volatile situation on the border...."
Muslim of East Pakistani and
Hindus who have been killed because
are Hindu.
The cmTe,pcmdlent, ....... ""."'.,•.7
Pakistan for ..................,.. ,
in order to his
little reason to doubt the of his
" and that the of East Pakistan is com-
oou,nde!d. by the ruthless methods of the West Pakistani
soldiers. President Khan must at all costs see that
such excesses as Mr. Mascarenhas are sto,ppOO.
The Pakistani President has offered to take back
uine but very few are to want to go back
at least until there are assurances that the has
awakened in recent to the
the influx of East
pf()mloted this mass exodus? Hitherto
of information have been out of
tJa.ustan, and we guess what was
"The world has
of the n ......hl,"".......
It is three months since the .....f'......"'..."
after the Pakistan cracked down on the East Ben-
bid for autonomy. Instead of it has
swollen to Three weeks ago the num-
ber of as Now it is
Now a COI're:ioondlent
himself a West
of whnt he saw in East and he makes these
that the Army has killed thousands of civilians
and burned dO\\Tl villages, that the toll includes both
APRIL 4, 1971
"In these times when fabulous sums are
to explore the universe, it is indeed that the rich
nations should be doing so little to help relieve the
ling suffering which millions of human beings are under-
going in East Pakistan and India.
Yesterday, India's Prime Minister Mrs. Indira
Gandhi, told her parliament that India may have to pass
through hell because of the influx of millions of East
Pakistani refugees but eventually the entire interna-
tional communi ty would also suffer 'the consequences' of
developments growing out of the three-month-old civil
strife in East Pakistan... ."
"It seems clear beyond any shade of doubt now that
the Army has been guilty of the indiscriminate slaughter
of women and children in East Pakistan, India's charge
of genocide may not be so exaggerated as it seemed at
first. Correspondents who have seen events in East
Pakistan for themselves report that hundreds of innocent
civilians have been slain by troops of the central govern-
ment. Yet they have seen only a fraction of the hor-
ror " .
" Yet President Yahya Khan's singlemind-
edness in attempting to crush the people of East Pakis-
tan to sustain the illusion of national unity will earn
him a place in the halls of infamy, next to Genghis
Khan "
"New Zealand should quickly appeal to Pakistan to
the bloodshed. according to the strict letter
of diplomatic law, it is none of our business. We
don't like being accused of poking into others' domestic
affairs. Yet in all conscience the scale of killing demands
we do
"The reports out of East Pakistan suggest
slaughter to an degree as President Yah-
ya Khan's seeks to mend with savage indiscrimi-
nate force the fracture that has sundered the nation...."
"The arrival of 6 million East Pakistani with
thousands more coming daily, is a potential tragedy for
India as well as for the unfortunates who have fled the
devastation of Pakistan's civil war.
For India, the cost of care of such St8lj'{j'{ennj'{
numbers of refugees to be immense-several
hundreds of millions of dollars that an overburdened
economy can ill afford. The $50-million international aid
effort for the refugees has been described by Prime Min-
ister Gandhi as "pitiable and a tenth of what is re-
" and no one has refuted her... ."
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
JUNE 1971
" ... If the situation as it is now, there
are two courses. One is that the resistance
movement led the Awami will crumble be-
fore the modern of the Central Government
forces. The other is that the of the resistance
movement will shift from the moderate Awami League
to the radical National Awami Party, and that a long and
dark internal confrontation will continue - through a
sort of people's war, with all of the people participating.
Even in the case of the former course, at least
resistance East Pakistan probably will and
in any case, the of distrust and hate have been
increased. Although national unification was considered
necessary because Pakistan contains heterogeneous peo-
ples and cultures, such unification becomes only
the agreement of the peoples.'
"The is now in its fourth
month. The and hunted are still ",h·,o"rnn..
across the border into India. There is no limit to the
brutality of the Pakistani military dictatorship - very
few of the terror victims belong to the group of
leaders whom the aggressors are trying to eradicate. Also
the common man falls victim to the 'final sol ution' which
the Pakistani obsessed by power, is to force
through as the terrible climax to decades of systematic
misgovernment. Scenes which are a daily occurrence
along the border between East and India expose
the miserable lies about the 'return to normalcy' \"'ith
which the dictatorship is trying to camouflage its crime
its fellow men...."
"We had hoped that President Yahya Khan's recent
n''''"\n''\,e-o of a political settlement heralded the st.art of a
move toward the reconciliation so urgently needed in
East Pakistan.
Unhappily the evidence continues to mount that the
Pakisi.<"ln Army's ruthless suppression of the East Ben-
galis and harassment of the remaining Hindu population
is stilI not over. And refugees are still fleeing across the
border into India to join the 6,000.000 already there.
GuerriHa resistance in East Bengal is so far on a limited
scale. But it is sufficient to give the \Vest Pakistani
a pretext for continuing
Surely President Yahya and his milit.ary gOV£.'rnor in
East Pakistan, Gen. Tikka Khan. must S{'€ that no rec-
onciliation is possible until the Arrny returns to bar-
racks and the population c.an live (ree from (ear
of reprisals and persecution. \\'hat is there of
DeI"Suaa.ln2 the refugees to return until a climate of se-
curity is assured?
The longer a political settlement is deferred. the less
there is of the unity of the two
of Pakistan 'in the-term."
attack on the rebellious East
whole d ties and
theircountry is almost be-
condi tion where their wasted bodies can absorb pro-
teins. The Indian Red Cross will administ.er the pro-
The savagery of
Pakistanis - ""v\".V'-'V
7.5 million
"The United Nations t<:l'l'\PI"f1Pf'lrV Fund is
massively ....... L" ......'''.. starvation among East Pakis-
tan's children.
young children and women - with 3
1'2 ounces
of high food a day. There will be centers
lor the children who must be back to a
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Aside from financial the presence of
the in such numbers poses a threat to India's
internal Moslem face resentment
among India's dominant Hindus. And the appearance
of Hindu refugees helps build up Indian feeling against
the Pakistani talk of a possible new
India-Pakistan war. Ominously, it is noted that the 1965
war with Pakistan over Kashmir cost less than mil-
a fraction of the cost of the
For the need is two-fold: A massive increase in
international aid for the and the creation of
conditions in East Pakistan to their early ..,.,""" ........''-
"Pakistan is of Cain and
Abel to an What is in
East Pakistan now is a thousandfold fratricide.... The
....... UlU. ...lV.. of East Pakistan of their
men, women and occurred first. Nobody who
saw the TV film out of East Pakistan last week
will forget the body of the bathed in blood.
One waits in vain for a denial. If what was shown on the
screen was true, then the military leaders in Pakistan
should react as as in the same way as
did the US in Lieut. CaUey and his crimes
in Vietnam. This is not a moral but a
The drain on India's financial and administrative re-
sources could put a serious in the vast nation's
efforts to its economy. The effective-
ness of economic-aid programs sponsored by the United
States and other well-off countries could be
" .... Pakistan has the first moral and respon-
sibility to rehabilitate these people and the soonef all
concerned whether Pakistanis or foreigners, make it
possible to repatriate the refugees back to East Pakistan,
the sooner will concrete rehabilitation work begin.
long-standing international disputes, the
current situation in the Indian sub-continent, high-
lighted recent developments in East Pakistan, Uf-
gently calls fOf a humanitarian to enable those
East Pakistanis who have abandoned their 'homes and
country since the beginning of the civil war, to be ab-
sorbed back into normal life as soon as
element of procrastination only adds more difficulties to
an already comple"problem...."
"Fat vultures brood over the 'i"a\J'Qf7tr...n towns of East
to the which took
savage crackdown on
ngrlunlg has died down for the
time with the routed,
but what may become known as the year of the vulture
in East is not ended. Famine now stalks this
land of disaster... ,"
"In the stories of crucification is a portion about the
of Jesus Christ of which I was reminded this
(June 15). The religious leaders had asked
,Jesus a question and when he had given his answer, here
was the classic remark: what need we further witness?
do not think the world needs further witnesses for it
be convinced that something abnormal has been
in Pakistan. I have always had the feeling that
there was more behind the policies and actions of
Pakistani authorities. I have had a sneaking feeling
what last March had been coflteInpJlau!d
and that Sheikh Rahman and his Awami
....-...."'b........ were only an excuse. There has never been any
denial that there has been imbalance in Pakistani society
the disadvantage of East Pakistan. It cannot be denied
Sheikh Mujib and his Awami enjoy over-
,.,10.."'1 "' ................4> of the of East Pakistan. It is
11 I to to remember that the Government of Presi-
Khan has not once disputed the gerlUlllenless
the elections or the validity of the resolution which led
the crisis. I think that people have 1""' ....."'+-+""....
the elections were for the Constituent Assembly and
it was Ali Bhutto of West Pakistan who refused to
in the AU this makes me believe that West
t"aJit!.SltmllS are in the of which
will cow East Pakistanis for all time... ,"
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
JUNE 1971
llnlr1lSPUlted leader of East Pakistan
has been the of tena-
the militarism of West
General Khan who is not
to the and to the
mation of the East Pakistan but who in prac-
has ordered the extermination of his adversaries ...
On 25th March the forces of General Khan
began ... the most horrible massive which
can remember in this of Asia.
"... In this Indira Gandhi's India has
an role. The have
fled to the land of Mabatma Gandhi and their number
touches five million. Daily, 8 hundred thousand persons
cross the frontier to their lives. The Government
of \\'ithout in the internal affairs of
Pakistan, has and continues to give to the
persecuted, within the of humanism. De-
spite Khan's Nehru's successor con-
tinues with her of to those who
are to escape massacre...."
JUNE 14, 1971
"\\te feel the whole world must awaken to the realities
of the conflict in regard to the wanton destruction of
human life by tanks and shells, famine and disease. The
Government of President Yahya Khan is try'ing to force
the East Pakistanis to accept its authority by force East
and West Pakistan are separated from each other a
thousand miles.... Since the conflict started a few
months ago, thousands of people have died from
hunger and disease. The exact number is not known and
may never be known. There have been accusations of
the Pakistan Government This bru-
tality may in the end subdue the people of East Paki-
stan. But one wonders whether this win unity...."
i\1AY 30, 1971
, APRIL 8, 1971
4tFor hundreds of years, the name of \Jt.:.IlAKU..ll:l
has echoed as a for
In the 20th it seems a Pakistani namesake of
the killer is determined to his
Pakistani General Tikka Khan - with modern
known as the of rebellious East Pakistan - is
fierce and Pathan who are
9""1"""""'11'I' wild in a fearsome blood bath.
There is evidence of ..........-iI,,,.
less of of rape, of n ..".ct;h,t";",,,,
and for senior army
4t ... The fertile land on the Ganges is now a colony
of the 'master race' from the Over three and a
half million Bengalis have already chosen to live as refu-
gees rather than bear their lot as the enslaved. But no
one in India knows how these millions are to be fed,
housed and cared for. The refugee problem bids fair to
lead to war ...
"The arrogance of the West Pakistani poli ticians, the
exploitation of the country in the familiar colonial man-
ner, had been engendering a pent up urge for freedom
among the Bengalis ...
"One thing is certain - there can be no question at
all, at least for decades to come, of peaceful coexistence
on a footing of equality in what may pass for a demo-
cratic state. The final split-with or without violence-
is but a question of time...."
" of diverse nationalities carried up to the
West more and more alarming news on the dramatic
evolution of the rebellion in East Pakistan. Tens of thou-
sand, hundred thousands even are to have been
killed in the actions ordered by Karachi...."
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
nnlnlr.n in the \Vest has been slow to
now is one to feel a sense of ur-
gency in the calls for action (rom relief and
charities. Yet the root elements in the the death
and destruction in East have been known for
many weeks.. ,.
Civil and communal war has killed many thousands
of ch·Uians. No one will ever know how many.
but disinterested observers have the as as
several hundred thousand.
have killed each other because of animosities
of race. politics and no is
of guilt. But the of death and hatred
has lx>tm the Pakistani Army. And its killing has been
selective: according to reliable from inside East
Pakistan. the have been intel-
leduals and leaders of stu·
dents, wri tel's....
of New
the state and
Ne'w York and the '-""""A".'''''''
some idea of the
now in Eas t that the ..... t .....
poorer and the area of India into which
is more than New York.
British sourc't'S estimate that between (our and five
million East Pakistanis have crossed into India and that
100.000 more arc every Before the total
could be seven or million.
The an' in a country that has diffi-
culty feeding its{'lf. one afflicted overTXlPulatjon and
There arc no jobs for the refugees. and
then.' is no farm land. They are starting to filter into
a city ""here one million people regularly sleep
on the pavement and more millions have no running
water or se\\'age systems.
07T.-U\'A CITIZEN I OTT...HrA), JUi\'E 15, 1971
""'hat happens inside a country normally is regarded
as an internal affair. But the Pakist.an civil \\'ar is no
long-PI' an internal affair. for two major reasons.
"One is that Pakistan is seeking economic aid from
outside which. if given unconditionally, could be used by
the military to strengthen itself rather than
meet the aspirations of the people.
"The second is that the flow of close to six million
into India has placed an burden
on that country's economy.
"The world community should move to prevent an
explosion while there is time. Conditions must be cre-
ated in Pakistan that permit the refugees to return home
and lead normal lives....
"The resignation of fourteen diplomats of Bengali ori-
gin from the Pakistani embassy in Washington and the
United Nations mission here offers further evidence of
the depth and bi tterness of the division between the two
Pakistans, East and West. The responsible positions the
defectors have held in the Pakistani
include the economic counselor of the and the
number two man in the U.N. mission-refutes the
of Pakistani President Khan that the ...., ....... """"', ....
uprising is merely the work of "mischief mongers, sabo-
teurs and infiltrators." It also casts doubt on his claim
that the resistance has been 'crushed.' . , ,"
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
AUGUST 1, 1971
can press is a reminder
man does not have to in order to
it. Most of the world remembers the silence while
miHions of civilians at the hands of the Nazis.
There was the excuse that no one knew what was
on in the concentration camps. The and tor-
ment of the East Pakistanis may not be to
the extermination of the but it is bad
.... ..."" ......... And no one can say, 'I didntt know.' ...
"It is the most since the
of the Nazis in a Uni ted
States official on the situation in East Pakistan. The
statistics are At least and
as many as 700,000 more than
wi th addi tiona! millions
more than 50,000 a still
thousands stiB dying, the victims of
ease and the of the West Pakistan army.
"... The human chronicled in the Amed-
"India is now being forced by humani tarian consid·
eration to care for the refugees in East Pakistan although
she was not responsible for the massacre of the innocen t
people of the BangIa Desh.
"The world must be shocked by the harrov,ing ac-
counts of genocide perpetrated against the people of the
Bangia Desh ... and must raise its voice in anguish to
express its sense of outrage a t the crimes commi tted by
the increasingly unpopular military junta against the
defenceless people of East Bengal.
"In the name of the humanity \\'e appeal to all freedom
loving peoples of the world to support India in cash and
kind in the gigantic task of caring for the refugeE's who
have now become a burden and liability on India.
"But again and again, we warn the unpopular military
regime of East Pakistan tha t genocide is not the end of
a people's legitimate aspiration for political freedom; it
is not even the beginning of the end but rather the end
of the beginning of more determined effort to fight
against the forces that oppress.. , ."
", , , Pakistan's offer of the so-called amnesty to tilE'
was like them as criminals and "' ....."Or...........
summons to them for their return rather than \'I.'plcY'lml
them back. This wiII result in their away and in
their being a continued burden on India.. Pakistan's offer
\I,'as far from meeting the of East for
political identity and farther still from the solution of
the problem, , . ,"
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Cordon of Fire
and diarrhea that ateom-
disease, Now officials fear
to exact
any more.
because what
from is even worse. Each
own horror story of
or other
the Bengali
ment One couple how soldiers
took their two grown sons outside
the house. bayoneted them in the
stomach and refused to allow any-
one to near the bleeding boys,
who hours later. Another wo-
man that when the soldiers
came to door, she hid her chil-
dren in her bed; but them
beneath the blanket. the soldiers
opened fire, killing two and wound-
ing another. According to one re-
port from the Press Trust of India
(P.T.!.). 50 refugees recently fled
into a jute field near the Indian bor-
der when they heard a Pakistani
army patrol approaching. "Sudden-
ly a six-month-old child in its
mother's lap starting crying," said
the P.TJ. report. "Failing to make
the child silent and apprehending
that the refugees might be attacked,
the woman throttled the infant to
The evidence of the bloodbath is
all over East Pakistan. Whole sec-
tions of cities lie in ruins from shell-
ing and aerial attacks. In Khalish-
pur, the northern suburb of Khulna,
naked children and haggard women
scavenge the rubble where their
homes and shops once stood.
Stretches of Chittagong's Hazari
Lane and I\1aulana Showkat Ali
Road have been wiped out. The cen-
tral bazaar in Jessorc is reduced to
twisted masses of corrugated tin and
shattered walls. Kushtia, a city of
40,000, now looks, as a World Bank
team reported, "like the morning
after a nuclear attack." In Dacca,
where soldiers set sections of the
Old City ablaze with flamethrowers
and then machine-gunned thousands
as they tried to escape the cordon of
fire, nearly 25 blocks have been
arms. They could not lie down be-
cause the water came up to their
knees in places. There was not
enough shelter, and in the morning
there were always many sick and
dying of pneumonia. We could not
get our serious cholera cases to the
hospital. And there was no one to
take away the dead. They just lay
around on the ground or in the
water," High-pressure syringes have
speeded vaccination and reduced
the cholera threat, but camp health
officials have already counted about
5,000 dead, and an estimated 35,000
have been stricken by the convulsive
out between East and West Paki- No More Tears
stan, and the still pour in.
No one can count them precisely. Ufe has been made even more
but Indian officials, miserable for the by the
camp registrations. monsoon rains. that turned
they come at the rate of 50,000 a many camps into muddy lagoons.
day, Last week the estimated total Reports Dr, Mathis Bromberger, a
passed the 7,500.000 mark. Should German physician working at a
famine hit East Paki- camp outside Calcutta: "There were
stan. as now seems likely, India thousands of out
fears that the number may double Ii in the open all night the
before the exodus ends. rain, Women with babies in their
Hundreds of thousands of these
are still wandering about the coun-
tryside without food and shelter.
Near the border, some have taken
over schools to sleep in; others stay
with villagers or sleep out in the
fields and under the trees. Most are
shepherded into refugee camps
where they are given ration cards
for food and housed in makeshift
sheds of bamboo covered with
thatched or plastic roofing. Though
no o'ne is actually starving in the
camps, food is in short supply, par-
ticularly powdered milk and baby
into India
It has been
war broke
stan continues to
India: an endless ..... ,,, ..,........ ;.,,..,'"'
of refugees with a few tin kettles,
cardboard boxes and ragged clothes
on their heads, carrying their
children and their old.
pad along barefooted. with the
at their heels in the wet
are silent, except for a
Another million lives, if need be,
child whimpering now and then, but
their faces tell the story. Many are
sick and covered with sores. Others
have cholera, and when they die by
the roadside there is no one to bury
them. The Hindus, when they can,
put a hot coal in the mouths of their
dead or singe the body in lieu of
cremation. The dogs, the vultures
and the crows do the rest. As the
refugees pass the rotting corpses,
some put pieces of cloth over their
The column
never ends, day or
four months since
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
A Pakistani mother and her four small children wait for food and shelter.
area no larger than Florida.
Harsh Reprisals
The Hindus, who account for
three·fourths of the refugees and a
majority of the dead, have borne the
brunt of the Moslem military's hat-
red. Even now, Moslem soldiers in
East Pakistan will snatch away a
man's Iullgi (sarong) to see if he is
circumcised, obligatory for Mos-
lems; if he is not, it usually means
death. Others are simply rounded
up and shot. Commented one high
U.S. official last week: "It is the
most incredible, calculated thing
since the days of the Nazis in Po-
worse than Viet Nam. But we will
win in the end."
Estimates of the death toll in the
army crackdown range from 200,-
000 all the way up to a million. The
lower figure is more widely accep-
ted, but the number may never be
known. For one thing, countless
corpses have been dumped in rivers,
wells and mass graves. For another,
statistics from East Pakistan are
even more unreliable than statistics
from most other places (see TIME
Essay). That is inevitable in a place
where, before the exodus
78 million 80% of
.... ""'. ' ~ ' ' ' ' ' ' were into an
Fear and deep sullen hatred are
everywhere evident among Bengalis.
Few will talk to reporters in public,
but letters telling of atrocities and
destroyed villages are stuck in jour-
nalists' mailboxes at Dacca's Hotel
Intercontinental. In the privacy of
his horne one night, a senior Bengali
bureaucrat declared: "This will be
a bitter, protracted struggle, maybe
bulldozed clear, leaving open areas tea crop is salvageable. More than
set incongruously amid jam-packed 300,000 tons of imported grain sits
slums. For the benefit of foreign I in the clogged ports of Chittagong
visitors, the army has patched up: and Chalna. Food markets are still
many shell holes in the walls of! operating in Dacca and other cities,
Dacca University, where hundreds but rice prices have risen 20% in
of students were killed. But many four months.
signs remain. The tank-blasted Raja-
bagh Police Barracks, where nearly
1,000 surrounded Bengali cops
fought to the last, is still in ruins.
Millions of acres have been aban-
doned. Much of the vital jute ex-
port crop, due for harvest now, lies
rotting in the fields; little of that aI-
harvested is able to reach the
a small part of this year's mills.
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
In Sarch of Home and Shelter
Christian SCience Monitor, May 14, 1971
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
10 Fly Vullures
Pakistani Calamity Defies .JL.J''-'.l.I...... .I.
March 25. That night the army
reared out of its barracks, and East
Pakistan was aflame.
Associated Press
Dac.:ca, East Pakistan
Vultures too full to fly perch
along the Ganges River in grim con-
tentment. They have fed on per-
. haps more than a half million bodies
since March.
Civil war flamed through Paki-
stan's eastern wing on March 25,
pushing the bankrupt nation to tne
edge of ruin. The killing and devas-
tation defy belief.
A tiny child gazes at a break in
the lavender carpet of water hya-
cinths in a nearby,pond where his
parents' bodies were dumped.
Toll Could Be lilIi on
No one knows how many Bengali
families the army machine gunned
or how many migrant settlers Ben-
gali secessionists slashed to death.
But estimates of the total dead start
at six figures and range to over a
In the port city of Chittagong, a
blood-spattered doll lies in a heap
of clothing and excrement in a jute
mill recreation club where Bengalis
butchered 180 women and children.
Reporters were banned from East
Pakistan from March 26, when 40
newsmen were bundled out and
stripped of their notes and film,
until the government escorted in a
party of six on a conducted tour
f\tay 6-11.
From visible evidence and eye-
witnesses questioned out of official
earshot, the following account
Throughout March. Sheikh Muji-
bur Rahman's Bengali dominated
Awami League harrassed the mili-
tary government with a noncoopera-
tion campaign demanding autonomy
and more benefits from \Vest Paki-
Bengalis killed some West Paki-
stanis in flurries of chauvinism.
Mujib's party had won a majority
in the National elections
and he was Pakistan's major politi-
cal figure. But negotiations in Dacca
with President Agha Mohammed
Yahy'a Khan broke down. and Yah-
ya flcw back to West Pakistan
rebellion planned for 3 o'clock the
next morning. They insisted that the
army killed no one but those who
fired at the soldiers,
Professors Executed But other officers said tbe rebel-
lion plot was only an assumption_
Soldiers assaulted two dormitories Eyewitnesses said at least hun-
at Dacca University where radical dreds of the victims were women
Bengali students made their head- and thousands were unanned civil-
quaners. They used recoilless rifles, ians, gunned down indiscriminately.
then automatic weapons and bayo- "I took firm action to prevent
nets. heavy casualties later," said the
They broke into selected profes- martial law governor, Lt. Gen. Tik-
sors' and students' quarters. They ka Khan.
executed some 14 faculty members, Dacca was brought under army
at least one by mistake. Altogether, control quickly, but word of the
more than 200 students were killed. army action flashed through the
Am1Y units shelled and set fire province of 58,000 square miles and
to two offices, then set 75 million inhabitants. one of the
upon the Bengali population in gen- ""orld's most densely populated
era!. More than a dozen markets areas.
were set afire. and at least 25 blocks Thousands of Bengalis in the
were devastated in Dacca. army, police, militia and border
Accounts, projected from body forces revolted. Under the banner
counts at mass graves indicate about of Desh, the independent
lO,O()() persons were shot to death Bengali state, the deserters and
or burned to death the first few armed volunteers fought back, seiz-
nights in Dacca. ing wide areas of the provinces be-
Official spokesmen contended that fore the 11.000 West Pakistani regu·
the army went into action to stop a • lars could occupy them.
NewIIrnly Terror in E. Pakistan Told
The Pakistani armv is inciting
neighbor against neigh-bar in a ne;
wave of terror sweeping East Paki-
stan, refugees escaping to India reo
Hindus are bearing the brunt of
the widescale killing, burning and
looting, and the troops are encour-
aging the local populace to do the
dirty work for them, the refugees
Foreign relief workers who have
interviewed hundreds of refugees in
border areas are convinced the Pak-
istani government is determined to
make East Pakistan exclusively
5 Million Refugees
Official Indian figures show 5,-
441,683 refugees have fled from
Pakistan since the civil war in
March and are coming at the rate of
about 100,000 a day. A big new in-
flux is anticipated as the army ex-
tends its area of control.
The Rev. John Hastings, a British
relief worker who has spent 19 years
in Bengal, said the army's tactics
everywhere follow a similar pat-
Troops more into an area. The
local people are called together and
told to declare their loyalty either to
President Mohammed Agha Yahya
Khan or to Sheikh Mujibur Rah-
man, jailed leader of the outlawed
Awami League.
Few Risk Death
The Awami League got 73 per
cent of the vote in East Pakistan in
the general election last December,
but few will risk death by admitting i the way to India, surrounded and
to having supported it. systematically butchered, the Rev.
The Bengalis then are ordered Mr. Hastings said.
to weed out the 'traitors' and are He estimates from interviews with
promised a share of the loot if they survivors that 400 died in the mas-
take the law into their own hands. sacre.
The eight million Hindu Bengalis in Indian intelligence officers report
East Pakistan are a natural target the Pakistani army now has 100,000
for the violence of Moslem mobs. troops in the eastern province.
Hindu refugees tell of entire vil- The army has not succeeded in
lages being burned, their daughters crushing all resistance.
raped and kidnapped, and hundreds Several thousand Mukhti Fauj·
massacred. Bengali freedom fighters - are in
Relief workers are told of troops camps along the borders. Guerrilla
decapitating their victims rather raids are slowly increasing_ India is
than shooting them in order to save supplying small arms and training
ammunition and of children being bases although the government de-
used for bayonet practice. nies this.
Tell of Massacre
One large group of Hindus es-
caping from the industrial city of
Khulna was stopped by villagers on
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
areas, a half dozen Russian and U.S.
Air Force cargo planes are airlifting
1,000 refugees a day to a at
Mana. some 500 miles west in
tral India.
Another 5,000 are put aboard
trains for the same destination. An
estimated one-third of these
off the trains as they pass thn!
Be/ugee Tidal Wave,
Poor Crowd Upon
Poor in Bengal
By HEt'RY S. HA)wARD I Pakistan.
Staff correspondent of I "One grows a little desperate," he
The ChrislIan Science l'.ionilOr
. . says, "People are dying like flies."
Knshnanagar, West Bengal "Some of them," he adds sadly,
He is 29 years old and 101" man in "died right outside the gate of this
charge of a district of 2.4 million residence-an old man of exham·
people. tion and a little child of cholera."
Now he has 600,000 destitute
refugees on his hands, as well, in More police aid sought
Nadia district. Some of them a1- ?vfr. Ghosh has requested help
ready are ill with cholera. Others from Calcutta. We sat in his office
face the threat of disease. and listened as he dictated a long
You drive 70 miles from Calcutta report to his superiors. He needs
to see this man. His name is D. K. more men to work in refugee camps,
Ghosh. He is district magistrate of to handle rations, to build housing,
Nadia. to do medical work. He was prom-
It is impossible to witness at any ised 1,000 helpers. None has yet
one place the full enormousness arrived.
of problems raised by the intrusion He also asked for more pOlice.
of more than 5 million refugees into No more have appeared in Nadia.
a countryside already poor and The great surge of refugees across
crowded. the border, he says, started May 24.
But Nadia provides a microcosm From early April until that date
of crisis viewed through the eyes of flow has been five or six thousand
one hard-pressed Indian offica!. per day.
Slim and soft-spoken, Mr Ghosh Reception points, vaccination fa-
tells you the story of a district that I cilities, and camps were handling
has a 135-mile border with East I this number adequately.
fewer than a dozen -deaths (rom
cholera-the most prevalent killer.
He points to new \vells for drinking
water. 60 feet deep and sealed at the
top against contamination.
But open-pit latrines are danger-
ously close by. Monsoons soon will
inundate the area.
Administrators of Jarger perma-
nent camps are not SO fortunate.
They have no choice but to push on. They seem to be fighting a losing Sleep In Stnets
Eventually they'll make it to Go- battle, overwhelmed by sheer num-
I N f
'J It is a miserable decision. Already
panpa agar camp, a ew ml es bers. But for the moment at least,
t._ dB' a.. a.. '11 more people sleep in the streets of
ut:yon an,aon, wuere tuey WI epidemic perils appear lo be dimin.
receive initial help. The camp is lit- ishinr>. Calcutta than in any other city in
t:> the world.
tie more than a flat shadeless eld Mass Immunization
next to a school compound. There For those who stay aboard the
are eight block-long rows of tents Indian medicaltcams have worked trains, however, the scheduled 21-
and seven more rows of bamboo to exhaustion immunizing eVefjlOne hour trip normally takes two days
framework already in place await- in sight. Medical supplies, however, and the prospects are perhaps
ing arrival of canvass covering. are running short. And replacement equally bleak.
The officer in ch'lrge. R. C. Das. shipments sometimes are madden- Even if they are allotted a plot
S.lyS he has 'only' IO.,WO evacuees ingly delayed. of land - as were refugees coming
registered _ crowded into the At Calcutta's Dum Dum Airport to India at the time of the partition
tents and thc balance finding shelter' a planeload of 8.000 cartons of vac· in 1947-they find it a desolate and
as best they can in the surrounding cine was held tip seven hours while dry region compared with the fer·
woods. a local Red Cross representative tile river basin from which they
'Better dutifully inventoried the lot with a came.
pencil stub and scratch pad. Officials admit the Mana reloca-
"Things are !"letter today th:m The haunting problem is \.,.hat to tion operation is only a stopgap
yesterday." he explains. "Last night do with the hordes of people once measure that soon will be choked.
we moved 9.000 out of here to an- they pass thn! the initial reception What will happen after that no one
other camp." camps. To relieve pres.sure in border kno\\'s.
Around the clock ne w refugees . .__._._. . _
move in to replace those who have
moved on. Obvious cases of cholera
.lnd others requiring emergency
medical treatment are sent on trucks
to a hospital nearer to Calcutta, 50
miles away.
Each person receives 400 grams
of rice, 50 grams of spices and 100
grams of potatoes per day. Mothers
and babies receive canned milk. The
head of the family also receives
three cents cash for each adult and
1.5 cents for each minor per day
with which to buy food outside the
Says Das: "With the food and
cash we give them, a person can
survive. That's about all."
Disease Claims 300,000
For many, of course, it is not
enough. Weakened by the arduous
journey and subjected for prolonged
periods to subhuman sanitary con-
ditions, disease was bound to take
its toll.
An accepted estimate here is that
in the past two months, since the
great exodus from East Pakistan be-
gan, perhaps 300,000 persons have
died of disease and another 300,000
have died of malnutrition. Two ba-
bies born recently in Gopanpal Na-
gar camp both died within hours.
Das admits his camp has been
extremely lucky, having, he says,
Slaff Wmer
TUESDAY. JUNE 22, /97/
S lion
ave Died
Like the muddy waters of the
Ganges, which many have just
crossed, the flood of. East Paki-
stan refugees pouring into India
thru this and other border points
moves with .1 terrible ceoainty and
The IOtal 10 date is about tive
million - give or take a million.
Some officials say it is the biggest
evacuation in history. So great is
the refuge_sO momentum that when
a checkpoint becomes clogged they
simply spill around it. Indi'ln border
guards, exhibiling unusual compas·
sion. make little attempt to halt
The people are driven by a fear
of the \Vest Pakistan army. They
say it is commiting wholesale butch·
ery in an effort to put down East
Pakistan's bid to separate itself from
West Pakistani control.
Behind them now and then a mor-
lar is heard. On the move for days.
they are desperJtely tired and hun·
gry. Their eyes are glazed. They
plod mechanicallY. Many are ill.
Many died along the way.
.\fothers and babies drape shawls
over themselves against the punish-
ing noontime sun. Others have um-
brellas for shade. Fathers lug bed-
ding and bJskets. Older children
carry younger brothers and sisters.
The human river moves at a tor-
tuous]y slow pace. It parts as a truck
honks its way against the tide. Some
fall to the side to rest. Others can·
tinue the march.
'Pakistan Panic: History's Biggest
Moment of Excitement
Upon passing thru the checkpoint
there is a babble of excitement. But
later they are silent once more. All
they see is more endless road, to
where they are not sure.
Eight miles ahead is the town of
Banjaon. Its narrow, bumpy main
street is clogged with people, live-
stock, vehicles, bicycles and two-
wheeled carts pulled by humans and
bullocks. Street profiteers offer food
and trinkets. The temptation is great
but the refugees have little money.
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Easl islan
MoslTran 0
cononay Badl
Crip led
Easl Pakistan: Jln IJllien JlrllJy'
InJposes lIs Will
fort to crush the Bengali indepen-
dence movement.
Most of the foreign residents-
diplomats, missionaries, business-
men-also talk the way this man
does now. They are bursting with
three months of pent-up anger and
outrage. And they are very eager
to tell what they know to those for-
eign newsmen who were permitted
to re-enter East Pakistan in the past
fortnight and travel around unes-
corted for the first time since March
25, when the army began its sup-
pression campaign.
BY SIDNEY H. ScHANBERG about two million tons a year; this Another unknown is the long-run
Special to The New York Times year it will probably be around impact of the exodus of the six mil-
Dacca three million. lion Bengalis who have fled to India.
Their departure. which has cut food
Food scarcities are becoming se- Dock Laborers Hne Fled output and industrial production,
rious in parts of East Pakistan. cash Apart from the transport mess, has also reduced consumption.
is short in rural areas, jute factories ports such as Chittagong and Chal- Even in areas where rice is in
are badly crippled and key road and na are also severely hampered by a reasoncbly good supply. cash is
rail communications continue to be lack. of warehouse space and by short and many villagers cannot af-
disrupted by guerrillas. labor shortages because much of ford to buy enough, even at the re-
Nonetheless, most foreign eco- the work force has fled to the inte- duced prices at which the fleeing
nomic experts here are convinced rior or to India. Hindu farmers are selling it.
that the Government is willing, at Because of the port congestion. The main reason for the shortage
least for the immediate future, to the United States. which normally of money is that the Government's
pay the severe economic priC'C of supplies East Pakistan with up to a rural public-works program has
supporting its army's occupation of million tons of food grains a year. been almost halted. Laborers who
the eastern region, which has been has temporarily suspended ship· used to make 60 cents a day building
badly damaged during the effort to ments. roads. irrigation canals and dikes
suppress the Bengali autonomy The other major food-scarce area are jobless.
movement. is the delta region on the Bay of All development work has
Informed foreign sources report Bengal that was devastated by the stopped. Government agricultural
that their field trips have turned up cyclone last November that killed technicians and private irrigation-
food shortages in some areas that several hundred thousand people well contractors are afraid to go
could become grave unless the dis- and destroyed most of the rich rice into the interior. Foreign consul-
rupted transportation system im- crop there. Food stocks are low on tants and engineers are killing time
proved markedly. the islands and in the coastal areas. in their Dacca offices. Government
One problem a:ea is the nor:
- I although conditions are not as criti- officers. though open, are short of
west, cal as was originally feared because staff and doing no planning work.
that suppltes nelghbonng dlstncts. some relief food has been delivered. Jute factories are operating at a
The economists .say the Nevertheless. the foreign sources fraction of their former levels. The
northwest. desolatc, With few said, unless the distribution system eastern region's jute, one of the
farmers VISible.. Most have appar- improves, the region could become mainstays of the national economy.
to Indl? to escape the a famine area. is Pakistan's biggest export and
1st am Army, which has been trymg The Khulna district in the Ganges earner of foreign exchange.
to suppress the Bengalis since March Della also has a food problem, the This was the economic picture
25. sources said, because many Hindu found by the World Bank team that
Destroyed, Looted. Removed farmers and farm laborers have fled. toured East Pakistan recently to
Food stocks in the northwest The minority Hindus have been par- study the prospects of peace and
have been either destroyed, looted ticular targets of the army, which stability as a requisite to the re-
or taken out of the country, the pictures them as agents of India and' sumption of full-scale aid.
foreign sources said. The situation enemies of this Moslem nation. The team, described by the for-
has not reached the starvation level,
they added, but people do not have THE NEW YORK TIMES. SUNDAY. JULY 4, 1971
enough to eat and the real problem
will arise in two or three months.
"Right now," an economist said,
"there are more likely a lot of hun-
gry people than a lot of dead
people." Dacca
The experts said that East Paki- "Doesn't the world realize that
stan as a whole had a two-month they're nothing but butchers?" asked
supply of food grains and that the a foreigner who has lived in East
problem was distributing it to the Pakistan for many years. "That they
deficit areas. killed-and are still killing-Bengalis
The railroad from Chittagong, just to intimidate them, to make
East Pakistan's major port, to Dac- slaves out of them? That they wiped
ca is still cut and guerrilla activity out whole villages, opening fire at
in the area is reported to be fairly first light and stopping only when
persistent. The line normally carries they got tired?"
70 per cent of the food grains im-I The foreigner, normally a calm
po.rted by East Pakistan. Major road, man, was talking about the Paki-
bndges have also been blown. stani Army and the bloodbath it has
The region's usual rice deficit is inflicted on East Pakistan in its ef-
economists here as shocked,
disconsolate, was reported to
have recommended that aid be with-
held until a viable political solution
was found and a realistic develop-
ment plan was prepared by the mar-
tial-law government.
The World-Bank coordinates an
II-nation consortium that has been
supplying about SS()()..miUion a year
in aid on which Pakistan is heavily
dependent. The United States chan-
nels most of its aid-about $200-
million a year-through the con-
How long Pak.istan will continue
to support army activities in East
Pakistan without the foreign aid is
a subject of widespread discussion
in the foreign community here.
Although foreign-exchange re-
serves are low, the situation is not
quite as crippling as had been as-
sumed. One reason is Pakistan's uni-
lateral declaration of a moratorium
on payments on her huge interna-
tional debt. Another is that since the
fighting began almost no imports
have entered East Pakistan, so the
government has saved foreign ex-
change. Finally, by coincidence.
high inventories of raw materials
for manufacturing had been accu-
mulated in West Pakistan before the
trouble started.
In sum. the foreign economists
feel that though Pakistan's economic
position verges on the desperate, it
does not necessarily presage an
early end of the occupation of the
Pakistan's military regime con-
siders the foreign press implacably
hostile, but it is desperate to prove
to the world its claim that order has
been restored, that the army is in
control and that normality is fast
returning to East Pakistan.
The army is, indeed, in control,
except for a few areas near the
border with India, where the Mukti
Fouj, or "Liberation Army," is ac-
tive and growing more so-with aid
from India.
Yet, East Pakistan is anything
but normal. For this is dearly and
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
The """ "f«t TIIMS .hItY 6. 1m
Power station at Dacca
(1) was reported knocked
out. Plant at Comllb (2)
was damaged last week.
said the power plant's main trans-
former had been either destroyed or
badly dam'lged.
Although the loss of electricity
will cause considerable disnlption in
Dacca, il will not bring the havoc
that would be caused in a Western
capital. There are few tall buildings
and therefore few elevators.
The airport - used mostly for
bringing troops in from West Paki·
stan. which is 1,000 miles away
across India-has an auxilia!)' pow-
er supply. This is also presumably
true of the major hospitals, includ-
ing the military hospital,which has
been handling army casualties from
all parts of East Pakistan.
Workers Gone
Factories in the Dacca area will
be the hardest hit, but since the up-
heaval in March, the factories have
been operating at a fraction of capa-
city because most of the workers
have fled either to the countryside
or to India.
The foreign sources here did not
know how wide an area had been
affected by the blackout or whether
the army had taken reprisals against
CuI 011
Power in
Most Dramatic
Bengali insurgents have knocked
out t,he electrical power station in
Dacca, the East Pakistani capital,
authoritative foreign sources re-
ported here today. These sources,
who received the information from
contacts in Dacca. said the city had
been blacked out since Salllrday
Several foreil:n newsmen are in
East Pakistan, hut no news of the
atta:::k has come out of Dacca. The
sources here Specul;lted that reports
were being bloded by the authori-
ties or that the office had been
shut hy the power failure.
Another major East Pakistani
town, Comilla, has been without
power for over a week, its power
plant reportedly also knocked out
by insurgents. Comilla, a key rail
and road junction aboul 50 miles
of Dacca and close to the
Indian border, has been a focus of
increasing guerrilla activily ag;linst
the P,lkistani Anny.
Since March :!5, when the army
began an offensive against the Ben-
gali secession movement. it has been
trying to subdue Ihe Bengali popula-
tion of 75 million. The army now
controls most of the province, but
there is resistance. particularly near
the border with India. and this re-
sistance appears to be widening and
growing more effective.
Special 10 The Nev. York Times
The crippling of the Dacca power
plant is the most dramatic act
ascribed to the insurgents since the
army seized control of the city in
late March after killing several
thousand civilians.
Few details are known of the
attack, which came sometime Satur-
day night. The foreign sources here
Since cabling this article, Mr.
Schanberg, South Asia correspon-
dent of The Times, has been ex-
pelled from Pakistan. On arril'illg if!
New Delhi, he said the Pakistan
Government had ordered him to
leave "in the interests of the security
of Pakistan."
a military an the cost of the occupation would
alien army. prove prohibitive and compel Paki-
Bengali police have been replaced stan to pull the army out !airly
by police from West Pakistan, the quickly has been discarded. Even
country's dominant wing that lies without the World Bank consor-
more than 1.000 miles away. with tium's massive annual aid, which
India in between. West Pakistanis has been suspended in censure of the
llre also being flown in to replace repression, the Islamabad regime
officials in every Government de- seems determined to keep its grip
partment, in some cases even down on East Pakistan.
to the level of typists. President Yahya Khan's speech
Houses and shops of those Ben- to the nation last f\.fonday was sup.
galis who were killed or fled to posed to have unveiled his long-
villages in the countryside have been awaited plan for returning Pakistan
turned over to Moslem non-Bengali _ East and West - to civilian rule.
residents of East Pakistan, who are It turned out to be exactly the OPPO-
collaborating with the army. The site-a declaration that the mililary
of t.he minority dictatorship would continue, with a
army s speCial scapegoats-are bemg hand-picked civilian l::overnment as
demolished for no other reason than camouflage. "
to demonstrate that those who are I I h' -h 'h' h W d'
not part of the army's design of, n IS speec . Ip-
"IsJ"'m'c' t'" 't to 1 t P k !omats here dC:"lnhed as <i dlsas-
".. 1 In .. gn yare no rue a' - to • . .'
istanis and will not be tolerated. the PreSident.. \\ hl) IS also army
. . chid, heaped pralsc on the army
Bengali youths. who Just over for rescuing the counm from
three months. ago were b' I f d' . 1 I" b h
. . rlnp; 0 Ism cgra IOn .. " \ t e
marchtng through the streets and fAil' h "Ll I' . d d
. h' I f fi grace 0 ...,. a. ne;1 "0 exten e
SllOutlng t elr S ogans 0 de ance at h' "f II t Ih " t· th .
h T . Ik' IS U es svmpa v a e
t ml Ita!)I', re.glme. now tfa '. m million Beng;dis. minority
w ISpers, Sipping up to orcign H'ndu wh h' . tl d t "I d'
newsmen for a few seconds to mur- I s, o.ne eon la- .
.. cause of false propas::anda by reb-
mur some IOfl)rmatlon about a mas- 1-" h 'd H • I d t h
h d f f
· e s, e sal. e appea e 0 t em
sacre. t e mur er o.•1 amlly.mem- to "return to their homes and
ber or the destruction of. a. Village. hearths" for "speedy rehabilitation."
Anonymous letters contalOlng such .
details find their way every day into Just the day before PreSident
newsmen's at the 'Hotel Yahya's speech. an army platoon
Inter-Continental. stormed into several predominantly
The effluvia of fear is overwhelm- Hindu villages 30 miles from Dacca,
ing. But there is also a new spirit. killing men and looti,ng. and burning
Manv of the Bengalis-a naive and homes. Reports of Similar pogroms
rom;ntic peopJe'--:-realize now that from other parts of the prov-
no other count!)' is going to save Ince. No knows exactly. how
them. that they will have to do it many t,he army has killed.
all themselves and that it will take but reltable foreign sources here put
a long time. Ihe figure somewhere over 100.000
numbers of young men - and possibly much higher.
are slipping off to join the Libera- The East Pakistani economy,
tion Anny, which operates from which used to provide the national
border areas and from sanctuaries treasury not only with half its ex-
just across the border in India. Ben- ports and foreign exchange but also
gali guerrilla terrorism is increasing. with a captive market for West
A number of army collaborators Pakistan's manufactured goods, has
have been executed. and more and been badly crippled by the upheaval.
more homemade bombs explode in However, the milila!)' regime seems
Dacca. The resistance is still spora- willing-at least for the present-to
die, peripheral and disorganized, but pay the severe economic price of
it is growing. holding East Pakistan as a colony,
With each terrorist act, the army no matter how sullen or resistant
takes revenge, conducting reprisals the population.
against the nearest Bengali civilians. "It's a medieval army operating
Several hundred civilians were re- as if against serfs," said one West-
ported to have been rounded up and erner here. "It will use any method
mowed down by the Army in Noak- just to own East Pakistan and keep
hali District recently after the Mukti milking it dry. Even if the Bengalis
Fouj executed a member of one of are serious about the resistance, it
the army's "Peace Committees" and will take five to 10 years to make
his wife and children. a dent."
The once widely held theory that
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
"President Yahya Khan's long-awaited proposals to
restore civilian rule to Pakistan are well meaning but
will hardly meet the emotional needs of East Pakistan.
For three months the province has been subjected to
military brutality, enough to carry resentment far be-
yond the ranks of the politically conscious. What is nec-
essary in the face of this despair and hatred? Surely
some magnanimity rather than the carefully hedged
promises made yesterday.
No plan fOf the future will succeed unless it can hope
to win over a large body of Bengali opinion. If those
ready to respond find themselves in a category of col-
laborators they will be powerless. Yet the wording of the
President's seems to call in East Pakistan for
what most of its will still as collabora-
". . . What is needed now is surely some measure of
goodwill towards the Bengali of East Paki-
stan that will encourage them to think that a
compromise might be possible instead of clinging to
hopes of guerrilla warfare, with all the added suffering
that more fighting would bring. They win not be inspired
by a statement, however well intentioned, that reads as
if it had been drafted by an Adjutant for Battalion
Yahya Khan's Announced Measures: Totally
For Lasting Peace in Pakistan
"President Yahya Khan of Pakistan has at last madE:'
known to an anxious world, made-sick at the shocking
reports of massacres carried out by the West PakisL.'1n
Army on their defenceless compatriots in the East, meas-
ures he has decided to take which he thinks will bring
the political situation back to normal. ...
Much as the world is anxious to see that the a trodties
in Pakistan come to an end, the measures that have been
taken by President Yahya Khan are far from bringing
about a stable Government in that country.
Dusty Answer
"Yesterday's address to his sundered nation by Gen-
eral Yahya Khan will do nothing to encourage the return
of Bengali refugees - some six million. The formula
which he described for the transfer of power to civilian
hands is altogether too nebulous...."
"... There is nothing in the situation as it exists which
A Step Towards Conciliation
"At this stage the extent of the physical and political
damage done by the Pakistan Army's repressive meas-
ures in the unhappy province of East Bengal is still im-
President Yahya Khan's long overdue effort at con-
ciliation announced in his speech to the nation June 28,
will not be sufficient in itself to heal the wounds.
Much more will be needed in practical ways that the
East Bengal will continue to be a colony of the Pun-
jabis in the \Vest as long as power is not transferred to
the people who truly represent East Bengal. And the
true represent.."ltives of East Bengal are those elected in
last year's general elections and who came from the
Awami League.
As long as the trusted leaders of the people of East
Bengal are kept away from exercising their legal right
to rule after thpy had received a mandate from the pe0-
ple, there will never be lasting peace in Pakistan.
includes any inducement to the refugees to return whence
they came. Their presence on Indian territory is a heavy
burden for that teeming country to carry and a visible
reproach and embarrassment to the military of
Yahya Khan...."
bewildered people of East Bengal can understand. The
physical damage must be repaired, relief allowed. to get
through to where it is needed. And above all a sense of
security must be achieved so that at least a substantial
number of the six million refugees who fled across the
border to India will feel encouraged to return to their
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
"Yahya Khan's nightmarish dreamworld shows no
of crumbling. It is a 'matter of satisfaction" to this
'simple soldier' (in his latest broadcast) that in the diffi-
cult situation his country has faced recently 'the reaction
and response from an overwhelming number of countries
has been of sympathy and understanding of the prob-
lems we are facing and trying to resolve'. If Yahya be-
lieves that, if Yahya can brush aside the nausea of all
Western reaction, then he may truly believe anything:
even the field reports of his Generals in Bengal. His
faith in what his aides tell him is touching, but tragically
pathetic. He has no real plans now. The proposals he
unveiled yesterday for a return to democratic govern-
ment arE.' a pathetic sham. If the aid-givers of the world
relent in t.heir shocked disdain towards Pakistan it will
not be because of an 'expert panel" conjuring up slick
formulae for subjugating Dacca once
"And nowhere, in aU the intellectual wasteland of
Yahya's Master is the central question
Does Pakistan exist any longer? Does unity matter
and longer? What precisely have the Punjabi legions
achieved? In Islamabad's book the regime snipped a
budding plot between Sheikh Mujib and Mrs. Gandhi
- a plot to wreck the pure state of Jinnah and deliver
half of it into the evil hands of New Delhi. That, seri-
ously, is what Yahya claims - the same Yahya who
allowed Mujib to win an unrigged election: to bargain
long and hard over a Constitution: the same Mujib who
waited quietly at his home for the Army to take him
away, who - far from leading a premeditated coup-
was patently stunned when the Generals attacked.... "
II Nation Divided
East Pakistan Conflict Is Complicated By Race. Religion and Poverty
tactics. West Pakistan officials say
everything is rapidly returning to
normal. But the economy is woe-
fully disrupted, factories are idle,
schools are closed, roads are mostly
empty and towns are largely de-
serted. of Bengalis, particu-
larly Hindus and middle-class Mos-
lems, are still hiding in the country-
side. About 50.000 refugees are still
fleeing to India each day. And army
rule is being challenged by Bengali
guerrilla forces (the Mukti Bahani,
or Liberation Anny) that seem to
have massive support among the
Bengali population. The guerrillas
are still lacking in training and or-
ganization, but supplies and border
sanctuaries are being provided by
Ten days of traveling across East
Pakistan and talks with scores of
diverse people here indicate that the
fourth stage eventually will be an
independent East Pakistan: Bangia
Desh, or Bengal Nation. But clearly
much more killing will take place
before BangIa Desh comes to pass.
No solution, including indepen-
dence, holds any bright hopes for
East Pakistan's predominantly peas-
ant society, which, in accordance
with the Mohammed's Prophet in-
struction to "go forth and multiply,"
Now the Third Stage
The third and present stage is
army occupation-a terrorized Ben-
gali population being ruled by mili·
tary force and crude police-state
the truth are punished. and the only
punishment is death," he says.
The doctor is an army veteran,
which makcs him a specialtargct for
his former colleagucs. But his real
crime is being a Bengali in a land
of Bengalis thaI also happens to be
part of the map of Pakistan. It is
now a land of death and of fear.
stan army (an almost entirely West
Pakist:1ni institution), fcaring that
East Pakistan was moving toward
independence. cracked down in
Dacca, the East Pakistan capital.
Beng:1li students were massacred,
politicians were arrested and the
Awami League was outlawed.
The second stage was a fairy-tale
few weeks in which the Bengalis pro-
Causes Washed Away by Blood claimed and celebrated their inde-
It is less than four months since pendence. Some thousands of East
the civil fighting in East Pakistan Pakistan's non-Bengali minority
began, bm already the causes of the were killed during this period, in
conflict seem almost academic. Its which the army, perhaps overly
geographical and historical roots, I cautious. remained in the capital
the legalities and mortalities - all and in a number of military camps.
seem to have been washed <nvay by But the illusion of independence
blood. No one really knows how ended in mid-April when the army
many people have been killed in emerged to crush the revolution.
East Pakistan since March 25, but Tens of thousands of Bengalis were
Western diplomats say the minimum slain as town after town was re-
is 200.000. The maximum exceeds taken, burned and looted. There
one million. was little military opposition. Some
The events fall into three stages. six million Bengalis, most of them
The first was a Bengali political from the Hndu minority group that
movement aimed at ending two dec- became a special army target, began
ades of economic and political ex- fleeing into India.
ploitation by the West Pakistanis. It
culminated, in March elections, in
national political victory for the
Bengali Awami League and its plat-
form of greater East Pakistan au·
tonomy. But on March 25 the Paki-
Thc doctor sits behind a desk in
his strect-front otlice in an East Pak-
istani town, occasionally glancing
out at the road lined with the
charred debris and looted shells of
shops and homes.
A vehicle with UNICEF mark-
ings on its doors but with armed
West Pakistani soldiers inside cruises
by. Otherwise, the street is all but
The doctor sits in his office only
because he has been ordered to. His
family is hiding in a village some-
where outside of town. He speaks in
a whisper because· any passerby
could be an informer. At night,
""'hen the army goes knocking on
doors, he lives with the fear that his
name may be on one of its lists.
He whispers of recent events in
this town: the streets littered with
bloated and decomposing bodies;
the burning, looting and raping; and
the continuing terror. "We are afraid
to speak the truth. Those who speak
Immediate Solution Seen;
Residents Barely Subsist;
Police State Grips
'Problems? There Are :"tone'
St;lff Reporter of The Wall Street Journal
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
All night we hear the screams. I
cannot sleep. We cannot stand to
see and hear these things,"
"Our army had a good reputa-
tion," the profesor says. "We had a
great army. But look what it has
done. How can an army be great
when it fights in an immoral cause?"
Two Mmy majors are standing at
a ferry on the east bank of
the Ganges River. One is a frogman,
the other one served in the camel
corps. Both seem to be civilized and
charming men. They explain th3t
they are fighting a patriotic war to
defend the integrity of their
against Indian agents, miscreants
and misguided individuals. "\Ve s;w.
atrocities that made Ollr blood boi!.
Had you seen them. even you would
have wanted to kill," he says of a
town where some Biharis ere
butchered by Bengalis. (The town
W.iS later leveled by the ;lrmy and a
far greater nurnher of Bengalis were
killed. )
tonment and beaten for several
hours by interrogators who don't
speak their language. A Westerner
hears of their arrest and protests. So
the matter comes to the attention of
an army major, who summons the
four Christians and offers apolo-
gies: "It is our policy not to beat
Christians," he explains.
A shopkeeper, a thin Bengali with
wirerimmed spectacles. glances out
from his shop two strangers walk-
ing down the desened street. They
enter the shop and inquire about
"the troubles" in this town. The
shopkeeper is visibly trembling.
"There is nothing I can say," he
replies. Then he glances again at
the flattened buildings lining the
main street and whispers, "look
around you." As the visitors leave,
he adds. voice cracking, "I'm
ashamed I cannot. ..."
Further down the street a youth
approaches. 'The army destroyed
our city. Bengalis a're being
•lrrested. They arc being shot every
night and thrown into the river. We Food for the Crocodiles
no longer cat the fish from the The majors are asked why sO
river." he whispers. many Bengalis have fled. partieu-
The youth guides the strangers lady Hindus. The answer is imagin-
to the local hospital to talk to a ative. They say that in April. before
surgeon. The surge(ln is a Bengali the restored order. Hindu,
!--ur j, employed by the government, told that the "holy Koran
which means he is particularly vul- is just an old book. So the Moslems
ner:lble, He is asked about killing. came out of their homes to defend
in the cit\'. "Killing? What killing?' the holv Koran and manv Hindus
Killing b'\ whom?" He is fled.' There has been muc"h killinc.
about problem". "Prohlems? the camel·corps major grants, "The
What problems? There arc no prob- crocodiles have gotten fat." says the
km,." frogman. glancing out at the Ganf:cs.
But all i" returning to normal.
they say, and the Bengali people
aren't afraid of the army. A ferry
is landing. and a group of Bengali
laborers. recruited hy the army to
reopen a jute mill. edges past the
majors in single file. Each of them
bows his head in a subservient sa·
lute as he passes the officers.
Not all army officers are as sym·
pathetic as these majors. Western
residents of one town tell of an army
captain approaching a young Hindu
girl and telling her to feel the barrel
of his gun. "You feel it is still
warm," he said. "From killing Hin-
dus," he added, laughing-but not
An old Bihari who served as a
bearer in the British Indian army
many years ago is now a waiter at
a roadside hostel on the outskirts of
a town more than half destroyed.
He supports the army and thus isn't
afraid to talk. He explains that for
several April days, after the Awami
league people fled but before the
army arrived, things were bad for
HcJaborinj! thl' Ob"ious
The visitors take their leave. Out-
side the hospital the youth whispers:
"You h;lve talked to the doctor, hut
I think he has concc;lIed the truth.
He is afraid." It is explaining the
A professor and his student are
talking about the prospects of stu·
dents returning to classes in early
August, when the university is sup-
posed to reopen. They are pessi-
mistic. Some students are hiding in
their homes, others have fled to out-
lying villages or to India. Some have
joined the Mukti Bahani. The cam-
pus has been turned into a military
camp, and troops are quartered in
the dormitories, using books to fuel
their cooking fires. "Would you
come back?" the professor asks.
The student, a girl, has a room
in a house that overlooks an army
interrogation center. "All day the
students, young boys, are brought
in and beaten," she says. "Three
soldiers walk on them with boots.
For Christians, No Beatings
They are taken to a military can-
All Bengalis arc miscreants now,"
the lawyer's younger son says. He is
a la\'.' student, but students arc a
special army target, and most arc in
hiding. The universities arc closed.
"What usc would there be learning
law anyway now that there is
law in our country?" the son asks.
It is evening, and the discussion
is taking place in the lawyer's home.
Before talking, he closes the wooden
shutters on the windows. Then he
has second thoughts-"someone who
passes by may report a conspiracy"
-and so the shutters are partly re-
They talk of "the troubles," of
how, when wnrd of the army's
March 15 att;)ck in Dacca reached
this town. the :\wami Lea&,ue took
control. There was orderly n.lle un-
der the Ban!=1a Dc,h tll!,= until miJ·
April, when air-force rlane, strafed
the town. People panicked. The
Awami and rheir
force. the \fukti Bah:mi. began to
flee along ith thousand... of others .
But it was se\eral d;IYS before the
arm\" reached the town. and durin$:;
that" time Bcnpli mobs at.
tacked and slauchtcred hundreds of
Biharis. •
Relative to its actions elsewhere.
the army. when it arrived. showed
restraint. \fost of the rown remains
undam:1ged. :11though rT11Kh of it
was looted by the army and its
mobs, About h:df the rllru1ation has
returned and many shors have re-
opened. though not under former
m:1nagement. Hindu shopkeepers
ha\'e disappeared. and Biharis and
other army b:lder", han? taken over.
And. as here. the arrests con-
Four Christian Bengalis are ar·
rested by the army at a roadblock.
Not many buse, travel East Paki·
stan's roads these da\'s. and those
that do are frequently' stopped, and
their passengers are lined up and
searched. Few of the soldiers at
these checkpoints speak any Bengali
(Urdu is the language of West Paki·
stan), and so a common way of find·
ing "miscreants" is to lift men's
sarongs. I\10s1ems are circumcised;
Hindus aren'!. Some West Pakistani
soldiers came to East Pakistan
thinking all Bengalis were Hindu.
More sophisticated soldiers simply
think that all Hindus are "miscre-
ants," but then so are many Bengali
Moslems. So it is all very confusing
for the soldiers, and the four Chris-
tians are arrested.
is propagating itself into starvation.
Its 75 million people already are
barely subsisting 1,600 to the square
mile. and this population \vill double
within 25 years. A half-million Ben-
galis were killed by a cyclone last
fall. A half-million more were born
in 87 days. Perhaps only in East
Pakistan could a disaster of the cy-
clone's magnitude be overshadowed
by a greater one-this civil war-
only six months later.
Primith'e ConceptioM of Guilt
Poverty, irmorance and frustra-
tion have turned this conflict into a
Congo as well as an Algeria.
are killing each other not only in the
name of politics hut also over race
and religion. The Moslem phlloso.
phy of an eye for an eye and a tooth
for a tooth i, made more terrible by
primitive conceptions of collective
The arm\' Bencalis. The non-
Bengali of two mil·
lion (commonly called Biharis)
backs the amn', So Benc;tlis kill
Biharis. The ar'my and Biharis
see this as ample reason to butcher
more Bencalis. The Hindu minority
of about to million becomes a can"·
venient army scapegoat and even
some Bengali Moslems can be per-
suaded to join in their slaughter.
Amid this chaos. variollS \'illages.
gangs and individuals have been
attacking each other for economic
gain or to settIc private scores.
These arc the tales of some of the
people encountered on a trip through
East Pakistan. As with the doctor.
the names of Bencalis and the towns
in which they arc omitted. Ben-
galis, in talking to a reporter, fear
for their lives. Most don't talk at all:
in some towns not even beggars will
approacn a stranger. Normally
among the world's most voluble
people, the Bengalis now talk mostly
with their eyes-eyes that look away
in fear or that stare down in shame
or that try to express meanings in
furtive glances.
A lawver and his sons have been
When one asks a Beng;ali
how he is these days, he "I
am alive." The lawyer and his sons
not only are alive but are living in
their own home. They are also hid-
ing in their own home, for they
leave it only rarely. "It is too easy to
be arrested on the street," the law-
yer says. "A seven·year-old can
point a finger at me and call me a
miscreant, and I will be taken
Miscreant is the term the Pakistan
army applies to all who oppose it.
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
the Biharis. Mobs of Bengalis ran
through the streets shouting (and
he lapses into his old Indian-army
English), "Kill the Bihari buggers.
burn the Bihari buggers." Some Bi-
haris were killed. he says. but most
weren't. Then the army arrived.
'The army kill many Bengali bug-
gers," he says. "And the Hindu bug-
gers. they run away to India. It is
very bad days. Sahib."
A Hindu, one of the richest and
most respected men in his commun-
ity before the fighting, was a phil-
anthropist, who had built schools,
hospitals and irrigation systems for
the predominantly peasants
in his area. He considered himself
fully P.skistani. Although a Bengali,
he hadn't backed the Awamj League
·but rather had supported the more
conservative and even anti-Hindu
\foslcm League.
protected them. But, with the arrival
of the army, roles reversed. and
Bengalis - particularly Hindu Ben-
galis - became the hunred.
Hindu villages were burned by
the army, and mobs were encour-
aged to plunder Hindu homes. Under
army orders the local Hindu temple
was smashed to the ground by men
wielding sledgehammers.
The Hindu and his family fled to
the village hut of a friend, where
they have been hiding for more
than two months. His first daylight
emergence from this hiding place
was for a rendezvous with two re-
porters. He walked across the rice
paddies in the late afternoon,
dressed as a peasant and shielding
his face with a black umbrella.
He hadn't fled to India like so
many other Hindus because he
hoped the army would move on and
life might somehow return to what
The Hunter Becomes the Hunted it had been before. But the army
For ncarly. a month after the civil remains, Hindus nre still being
war hegan but before the army searched out and shot. and now it
arrivcd in his area (and thus during is too risky to try to reach the bor-
the period Biharis were in danger. dcr from this area.
from Bengalis), the Hindu sheltered I Only a few close friends know
two Biharis in his home. \Vhen' his hiding place. One of them is a
mobs came looking for them, he Moslem Leaguc official. an influ-
ential man these days since many
Moslem leaguers are supporting
the army. "He knows where I am
hiding. but he dare not help me,"
the Hindu says. He believes that
nearly all Moslem Bengalis sympa-
thize with the Hindus. "But what
can they do? They. too, are in dan-
ger and they are afraid,"
All the Hindu's property is on an
army list of "alien properties." In
other areas it is called "enemy prop-
erties," but in either case it is sched-
uled to be confiscated and put up
for auction. The Hindu talks much
about losing his life.
"My Moslem friends tell me that
Hindu bodies taken from the river
are so disfigured from tortures that
the faces cannot be identified," the
Hindu says before picking up his
umbrella and hending back across
the fields to his hiding place.
A Headmaster Recites His Lesson
The travelers visit a town neilr
the Indian border. One of the last
towns to be retaken by the army, it
is henvily damaged and is still large-
Iy deserted. Here the local peace
committee - a unit composed of
some Biharis and conservative Ben-
gali Moslem who serve as
the local eyes ears of the
assigns two youths to guide and
dow the visitors. "Come to the
school and talk to the headmaster."
they say.
The headmaster, a middle-aged
Bengali, sits behind his desk. The
reporters sit facing him. And stand-
ing behind the reporters, also facing
the headmaster, are the young peace
committee shadows. In a faltering
voice the headmaster begins to re-
cite statistics of school enrollment,
dates when schoolhouse cornerstones
were laid-anything unconrroversial.
At the end of each sentence he
glances up. past the reporters, to the
shadows, like a sch<.X)lboy
his lessons to a teacher with a
How was the school damaged:
the reporters ask. "There was some
strafing." he mumbles. Then, look-
ing up at the teen-age shadows. he
hurriedl}' adds. "and maybe it was
damaged by miscreants."
As the reporters and their sha-
dows leave. thc professor mumbles.
"We arc trying to hold togethcr,"
and then he stares down at the
East Pakistan Is Seen Gaining Independence, But It \Vill Take Years
Bengalis Increasingly View
The t:.S. as Their Enemy;
Learning to Be Guerrillas
Well-Fed III-Fed People
Staff Reporter of The Wall Street Journal
An independent East Pakistan
seems to be one of those ideas whose
time is cuming.
Travels across the ravaged land
and talks with military participants
in the civil conflict, its innocent suf-
fers and its diplomatic observers
leave the distinct impression that
someday East Pakistan and West
Paskitan will be separate legally as
well as ideologically.
How soon BangIa Desh, or Ben-
gal nation, comes to pass-and the
diplomatic asseSS'nents tend to be
in terms of years, not months-de-
pends on many factors. These in-
clude the degree of support India is
willing to give the liberation forces,
the weight of economic pressures
on West Pakistan, the severity of
future famine in East Pakistan and
perhaps the policies or America and
other world powers.
For the moment, both the Pakis-
tan army and the Bengali indepen-
dence movement seem to be overly
optimistic about their capabilities
and prospects. The army. currently
running East Pakistan as a kind of
recunquered colony. says everything
is under control and is rapidly re-
turning to normal. But all around is
evidence of social chaos, economic
collapse. public hostility, and gradu-
ally mounting guerrilla opposition.
Guerrilla Warfare and Patience
Bengali liberation forces still talk
of massive offensives that will "lib-
erate" the land as early as this fall,
or of the Indian army coming to
their aid, or of the Pakistan army
simply tiring and going away. But
the Pakistan army, tough and tena-
cious, seems determined to hold
on here at all costs. The Indians,
while aiding the Bengali resistance,
seem anxious to avoid full-scale
war. Many Bengalis don't seem to
comprehend that guerrilla war,
which they are beginning to wage
with some effectiveness, is their only
hope and that it requires much time
and patience.
The fighting began March 25 with
attacks by the Pakistan army on
civilians in Dacca. The amount of
blood that has been spilled in East lead some Indian policy makers to
Pakistan since then appears to rule favor war with Pakistan. The odds
out any sort of political comprise. are still against a full-scale war, but
Diplomats say that a minimum of artillery exchanges erupt daily along
200.000 and perhaps as many as a the border. Presidential adviser
million people have been killed in ,Henry Kissinger, during recent
four months, most of them Bengali meetings with American officials in
civilians slain by the Pakist:.m army. ' Islamhad, the national Pakistan cap-
Six million refugees have fled to ital located in the West, is said to
India, and milli<.;ns more are dis- have called the odds for an Indo-
placed persons still hiding within Pakistan war better than one in
East Pakistan. three.
In the view of nearly all observers The scope of the Pakistan army's
here, much more blood will flow, military problem here can be seen
many more villages will be destroyed in a comparison with Vietnam.
and many more people will be up- There, a million-man South Viet·
rooted before the conflict ends. namese army plus American troops
If the war does result in BangIa and massive firepower must try to
Desh, America may be in trouble. control a population of 17 million,
By continuing to supply aid-and many basically sympathetic to the
particulary arms-to the central gov- government Here, only 60,000 West
ernment of Pakistan, the U.S. is Pakistani troops are trying to con-
increasingly coming to be viewed as trol a thoroughly hostile population
an emeny by the Bengali people. of 75 million. East Pakistan, more-
Moreover, the longer the Pakistan over, is surrounded on three sides
army is able to maintain its hold by India, which is giving sanctuaries
on East Pakistan, the more likely it and supplies to the guerrillas. And
is that the Bengali independence the Pakistan army's supply routes
movement will slip under Commu- from West Pakistan to the East must
nist influence. circumvent, by sea and air, 1,200
A Problem for India miles of India.
This is one of the worries that Of course. the Mukti Bahani, or
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
He leads a group of 37 men,
armed mostly with old Lee-Enfield
rifles. But they also have one or
more light machine guns, grenades
and dynamite. Some of the arms as
well as the ammunition are supplied
by India, to which this unit fled for
several weeks in April. The unit
isn't short of weapons or bullets,
the leader says.
It doesn't receive any direct
orders but reports on its operations
by runner to higher Mutti Bahani
headquarters near, or across, the
Indian border. The unit depends for
food and lodging on local villagers,
some of whom are paid and others
of whom make "voluntary contribu·
The unit has launched two attacks
in this area in the past few weeks,
one a raid on a police station in
which 11 weapons were captured.
It also blew up a bridge along the
road. When Pakistan army troops
reached the site, they were am·
bushed by another unit of l\iukti
Bahani. The Pakistan army is said
to have suffered at least a dozen
casualties. This 37-man unit hasn't
had any casualties to date, nor have
any of the men quit the unit.
The leader thinks the Mukti Ba-
hani will soon win the war because
the people are behind it and be-
cause, he says, 300.000 Bengalis
are getting military training in India.
The statement about public support
is probably accurate. But the claim
about military training, according
to more reliable sources, is probably
a tenfold exaggeration. And believ-
ing in quick victory is both naive
and dangerous.
liberation isn't the Vietcong.
For one thing, guerrillas aren't
Communist. For another, they are
not-or are not yet-very effective
fighters. They have been at it for less
than four months, and organization
and discipline don't come naturally
to most Bengalis.
to Be GueniDas
But they are learning. In recent
weeks they have been concentrating
on disrupting the Pakistan army's
'\ lines of transportation; bridges are
being dynamited and railroad tracks
sabotaged. The key railroad line
from Chittagong, East Pakistan's
major port, to Dacca, its capital,
ha.s been put out of operation, and
almost all supplies must move in-
land by riverboat. Electric power
facilities in Dacca and elsewhere
have been blasted. The guerrillas
also are concentrating on assassina-
tions of local People who collabo-
rate with the army.
The Mukti Bahani enjoys some
big advantages, though it is far from
ready to benefit fully from them.
Much of the land, outside the towns
and off the main roads, is a vacuum
that 60,000 soldiers can never hope
to fill. At night the Pakistan army
withdraws into military camps, but
if and when the guerrillas learn how
to use mortars and rockets, these
camps could become traps rather
than refuges.
The Pakistan army's crude and
bloody tactics, while cowing most
Bengalis, have been solidifying pub-
lic support behind the independence
movement and have left the Mukti
Bahani with a sea of sympathizers
in which to swim. A severe famine
this fall or next, which Western
economists consider likely, could
possibly produce from the peasant
sympathizers great waves of desper-
ate and angry activists. "A nation
with a well-fed army and an ill-fed
people cannot survive," a Bengali
professor says.
A clandestine meeting with a
Mukti Bahani unit leader at a
Moslem village deep inside East
Pakistan provides some insight into
guerrilla operations. It is early
morning, and the leader is sitting in
front of a peasant hut where he has
been sleeping the past several
nights. He is a former noncommis-
sioned officer in the Pakistan army
who, like almost all Bengali soldiers
and policemen, joined the revolu-
tionary movement in late March.
(Some were subsequently killed,
others fled to India.)
army. The flat, marshy riceland of the army was routed out of his bed
East Pakistan is misery to soldiers at night by Mukti Rahani. He was
from the dry hills of West Pakistan. given an hour to say good-bye to
Scattered reports say that some his mother. Then a "people's court"
West Pakistani military officers- was convened in his front yard with
including a senior navy commander neighbors summoned as jurymen.
and air-force general-are opposing He was convicted and executed, and
the army's brutal tactics and slaugh- his body was left in the road as a
ter of the civilian population. warning to other collaborators.
The Pakistan army, however, Then there was this encounter by
doesn't appear to be cracking under two reporters with a small-town
any present strain. To most of the peace committee. The Mukti Bahani
military men this is a kind of holy had made a small foray into the
war for the preservation of Pakistan town the previous night, firini a
and the purity of the moslem reB- few stray bullets, destroying a tele-
gion. And if Pakistan's president, phone at the railroad station and
Yahya Khan, comes under political robbing the station safe of about
pressure in West Pakistan, it is more 53.00. The attack could hardly have
likely to come from hawks calling been less effectual.
for even tougher measures than But to listen to the peace com-
from doves. "West Pakistan will let minee it had been an epic assault.
itself be drained before it gives East "Forty Mukti Bahani came armed
Pakistan up," a European diplomat with automatic weapons," the com-
in Dacca says. I mittee chairman, an elderly Bihari,
To help control the Bengali pop- I says. A half·hour later the tale had
ulation, the army has been setting escalated into an attack by 100 Mu-
up a network of peace committees kti Bahani men carrying machine
superimposed upon the normal civil guns. "What could we do?" he asks.
administration, which the army can- 'The razikar have only four rifles.
not fully rely on. Peace-committee The army is stationed 10 miles away,
members are drawn from East Pak· maybe there will be more attacks."
istan's non.Bengali minority (called I The committeemen know that they
Biharis) and from the membership I themselves are targets. Death
of small, conservative religious- shrouds have been left at night on
political parties like the Moslem their doorsteps as a sign that they
League and the lamaat-I-Islami. are marked men.
The peace ser:-
as Like the army, the peace com-
.for mformlng on mittee blames all troubles on mis-
the Civil administratIOn as well as creants and goodas (criminals).
on the general populace. They are Indian infiltrators and a few mis-
also in charge of confiscating and guided indi .... iduals _ all of whom
shops l.ands .from are lumped together under the term
enemies of the people, like J:!mdus "antielements". All townspeople
and pro-independence Bengal.ls. Th.e support the army and the peace
peace recruit rezl- committee. these committeemen
Little Realism on the Other Side kars, or armed .. Many of say. As they talk to the two re-
them are comn:
who porters, se.... eral score townspeople
The Pakistan army, however, is thel.r lot With army. stand around, silently listening.
hardly more realistic. A Pakistan Blhans, opportUnists, louts The reporters leave, turning a
general in Dacca flatly states that and thugs -that s the capsule def- corner out of sight of the commit-
all guerrillas in the area where the offered by one teemen. The townspeople follow
Mukti Bahani leader leader and his While the general Bengali popu- and rush up to them.
unit are operating have been eHmin- lation is terrified-and terrorized- .
ated. The general says army casual- by these local army collaborators, man talkmg was a
ties in all East Pakistan are averag- the collaborators also live in fear. Bengah. . .. No one agrees With
ing only five a day; diplomats esti- Dozens of peace committeemen says.... The peace com-
mate them at more like 50. have been assassinated by Mukti mlttee IS a tr.ap for the people....
Army morale still seems to be Bahani or by Bengali neighbors. In The army kills many people. here
generally high. But the conflict's in- one town a peace-committee official ...We cannot talk or Will be
itial stage, in which the army ruth- sleeps on the floor of his house with reported to the army....
lessly recaptured rebel-held towns three razikars lying on each side of The civil fighting has had calam-
in a spree of killing, lotting and rap- him. In another town the peace- itous economic effects. The immed·
ing has been over for three months, committee chairman has paid $625 iate sufferers, of course, are the
and the newstage of guerrilla warfare protection money to the Mukti Bengalis, whose already desperately
will be much more grueling. Many Bahani to prevent, or postpone, poor and overcrowded land has
Pakistan soldiers came to East Pak- assassination. been rendered even poorer. Trans-
istan thinking they would be here In one roadside village a peace portation is disrupted, commerce
for only a month or two of combat, committeeman who two days before has collapsed, factories lie idle,
not as a semipermanent occupation I had turned several Bengalis over to public-works programs are at a
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
standstill and crops go untended.
One result, Western economists
believe, could well be a severe fam-
ine late this year.
The rice crop will be affected be-
cause farmers have fled their pad.
dies or fear to go out of their homes
to tend the crop. Last year the food·
grain harvest was IL5 million tons;
this year it will be no more than
9.5 million. East Pakistan's food-
grain requirement is 13 million tons,
and the deficit traditionally has been
made up by imports, much of it
through purchases for local cur·
rency of American surplus-food
stocks. But now, because of the
conflict. the distribution system
can't handle the import load while
the reduced crop makes the' need
One economist estimates that the
distribution system would have to
handle 300.000 tons of imports a
month. wherea.. ..;. even in normal
times, it has never been able to
carry more than half that amount.
already has stopped new
food· grain shipments because rice
is backed up on the docks of Chitta-
gong. One reason. of course, is that
to the army administra-
tion. rice rates a lower priority than
military supplies.
A Land of Uttle Hope
Even if famine can be averted
both this fall and next, the ceo·
nomic punishment of this conflict
will be felt for years. probably dec-
ades, and will cripple the land even
if independence comes. In a sense
it's like crippling a leukemia patient.
for East Pakistan - with or without
war - is a land of little hope. AI·
ready, 75 million people are packed
within its frontiers, and the popula-
tion will double in 25 years. People
will then be living more than 3,000
to the square mile, and no. one
knows what they will live on.
But the economic situation here
is also serious for West Pakistan.
The West has always treated East
Pakistan as a kind of economic fief·
dom, pocketing foreign exchange
from the export of East Pakistan's
raw materials like jute and tea while
using Enst Pakistan as a captive
market fro low-quality West Paid·
stani finished goods.
The main East-Pakistan export
is jute. Last year the jute crop was
seven million bales. This year, West-
ern economists say. the maximum
will be 5
.1 million. But with the
trading and transportation systems
disrupted, much of it may never
reach the mills. Even then. the mills
are barely functioning: Only 36%
of the jute-mill workers have reo
turned to their jobs. and mill out-
put in June was only 20% of nor-
mal. Economists say if that situa-
tion continues for several more
months, ovcrseas jute buyers will
begin turning to other suppliers.
Commerce is almost at a stand·
still in many areas. Most towns arc
reduced to a fraction of their for·
mer population; a majority of their
people are dead. have fled to India
or are hiding in the countryside. Re-
tail trade in Dacca is only 35SC of
normal and in other towns consid·
erably less. Even where shops are
open, people have little money to
spend and no inclination to spend it.
Western economists in Dacca two American ships are bringing
say the economic crisis already is ammunition to the army. But the
starting to spread to West Pakistan, Canadian people support our cause.
where factory laborers are begin- We are grateful to the Canadian
ning to be laid off. West Pakistani people," n teacher says, trying to
goods that were sold in the captive be as polite as possible. "We under·
market of East Pakistan aren't very stand that you must make money
competitive in other countries. by selling guns to Pakistan, but
All this, plus the loss of East please sell us rifles, too," a lawyer
Pakistan tax revenues and the added pleads.
costs of maintaining an army of A student says: "At Kent State
occupation in East Pakistan, will you lost four students and the whole
have reduced Pakistan's foreign- world protested. Here thousands of
exchange reserves to a critically low students have been killed by the
level. by October, the economists army, but does the world care? YOll
here say. Whether foreign·aid do- supply guns to the army. It we werc
nors will help bailout the Pakistan European, you would care."
government remains to be seen. China, (or short-term natiomll
America's aid program to Paki· reasons rather than long·term ideo-
stan is in a state of considerable logical ones, is the only othcr im·
confusion, especially to the people portant power supporting Pah.. tan.
here. Onicials in Wash;ngton say "The cradle of democracy. America.
economic aid is continuing to both and great revolutionary China
West and East Pakistan on a ca..c- allies giving aid to the Pakistan
by·case But. in practice. this which is suppressing our
means the East is getting little help. freedom and slaughtering our peo·
The Nixon administration says it ple.\Vhy is this'?" a college instruc·
isn't granting any ne"' military as- tor asks.
sistance to the central government During his meetings in Islama-
of Pakistan. But goods contr:lcted bad, Mr. Ki.ssinger was pressed by
for prior to March 25 are still being some Dacca·based diplomats criti-
sent, although Ihe administration cal of America's friendly relations
contends that these are generally with the Pakistan government. Mr.
sales of such things as wmmunica· Kissinger responded with a ques·
tions equipment, not arms. tion. Would a change in American
All this has left the Bengalis con· policy make East Pakistan indepen-
fused and angry. and it is dence in two years or five
to he an American visitor in East years rather than 10 years? There
Pakistan these days. Those few was no definitive answer. But
Bengalis \\ ho arrest oy talking whether Bangia Desh come to pass
to a stranger invariably ask why' in two. five, or 10 years, is citizens
America continues to ship supplies are likely to have long - and not
[0 the Pakistan army. very fond - memories of America's
"We hear on Pakistan radio that role in their revolutionary war.
10 Million Pakistan Exiles Predicted by End 01 Year
Washington Post Staff Writer
Angier Biddle Duke. who headed
an International Rescue Committee
team studying the plight of Paki-
stani refugees in India, predicted
yesterday that the continuing ten·
sion in the region would bring the
number of refugees to 10 million by
the end of the year.
Duke, a former U.S. ambassador,
was in Washington to seek U.S.
government cooperation in a num-
ber of programs the IRC has started
in India to aid the refugees. In a
report that Duke gave yesterday to
Francis L Kellogg, special assistant
to the Secretary of State for refu-
gee affairs, the IRC reported on
"the desperate air of tension the
Pakistani army has tried to main-
tain along the border by motar fire
to which the mission can bear per·
sonal witness."
The report stated: ''There is no
indication that the exodus has been
halted. If the present trend contin-
ues, the figure is likely to go to
seven million before July is out.
Seven million is the total popula-
tion of Cuba."
Indian sources indicated the pre-
diction was correct. The movement
of refugees from East Pakistan
started on March 25 when the
forces of the Pakistani central gov-
ernment cracked down, allegedly to
prevent the establishment of a se-
cesionist state. Reports from the
scene told of rape, murder and
other atrocities. and Bengalis
poured into India to escape what
was widely described as a blood-
State Department officials said
yesterday that military activity in
East Pakistan has largely subsided
since May although action against
guerrillas continues. These officials
also note that the flow of refugees
has dropped to "as low as 20,000
a day.
Duke said that the continuing
state of tension rather than any
actual bloodshed is enough to keep
the refugees coming into India. He
said the IRe was setting up pro-
grams to use refugee doctors and
teachers to work with the Bengalis
who are filling camps in India. He
said the IRC hoped to raise $1 mil-
lion and to get additional funds,
partly from the U.S. government, to
run a program that would cost $2
million over the next six months.
But Duke said that any attempt
to work with the refugees is noth-
ing more that a palliative. "Political
solutions for the return of the Ben-
gali refugees must be found," the
IRe mission report said.
There is concern w.ithin the U.S.
government that the continuing
drain on India caused by the pres-
ence of the refugees could lead to
an explosion.
Some officials are also worried
that the end of the monSOon rains
in October could bring more blood-
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
shed. Intensified civil war with a
greater flow of could create
still greater strains on India.
A possible Indo·Pakistani conflict
carries with it the potential for a
Sino-Soviet confrontation, U.S. of-
ficials have noted. Pakistan is under-
stood to feel confident of Peking's
support, while India has been
backed by the Soviet Union.
The United States, meanwhile,
has sought to keep up a dialogue
with both sides. Assistant Secretary
of State Joseph J. Sisco saw both
the Indian and Pakistani ambassa-
dors on Tuesday before he left for
Israel. The United States has wei·
corned Pakistani President Yahya
Khan's willingness to accept a
United Nations presence along the
The Indians have turned down
the Secretary General's proposal,
refusing to be "equated" with Paki-
stan in this situation. Indian officials
say further that it is impossible to
seal a 2,nO-mile frontier "vith no
natural barriers.
The has officially
tuen a low-key stance, urging re-
straint on both India and Pakistan
and quietly nudging Yahya to reach
a political accommodation with the
Bengalis that would allow the rdu-
gees to return.
East Pakistan: Shades 01 the VietnanJ War
Bengali Diplonaals
Rsk IIsylunJ
now control every aspect of life in the Bengalis rather than challenge.
East Pakistan, apart from hinter· For many observers here, the Si1d·
land zones they do not take the trou- dest and most significant fact is that
ble to occupy. somewhere near seven million
And the prevaling impression reo pie have fled to India, and the
mains one of despair on the part of I gee flood continues.
The Government's army is large·
Iy confined to the towns and roads.
The guerrilla rebels in the country·
side get help from across the border.
A clandestine radio transmitter re-
ports "liberation army" successes
and predicts eventual victory.
A visitor to East Pakistan can
drove througp much of the region
without observing anything abnor·
mal. Yet 'many foreign diplomatic
observers have been tempted to
compare the Bengali situation with
the opening phase of the Vietnam
'war, and some of the parallels-such
as those listed above-are unmistak·
Bu! if a guerrilla 'war in Eas! Pak-
istan is undcr way. it has a long way
to go before reaching the Icvcl of
effcctivcness seen in East Asia dur-
ing the past few decadcs. Behind the
volume of propaganda on all sides,
not very much seems to be happen-
Some kind of war is unfolding
in Eas! Pakistan. At least a few
people are getting killed and many
others are suffering. But in this pas·
sionwrenched land it is as difficult
to verify a fact as it is to find a dry
place to stand in the current mon-
soon rains.
Along East Pakistan's eastern
border. Pakistani and Indian artil.
lery thunder away at each other,
and both sides have augmented their
forces in the region during the past
week. Military men and odinary
people expect a surge in violence
during the next few weeks, possibly
timed to concide with Pakistan's Na-
tional Day Aug. 15.
The 60·mile road between Dacca
and the important frontier garrison
of Comilla is open. There is little to
show that the Government is having
any difficulty maintaining this stra-
tegic link. One mine was planted on
the road recently, and the rebels
dynamited a key bridge on the road,
but traffic was detoured over a
rickety wooden bridge a few hun·
dred yards away.
In Dacca, guerrillas have made
their presence felt during the past
two weeks by knocking out the city
gas supply and damaging the elec-
tricity supply badly enough SO that
there are frequent blackouts. There
are nightly sounds of explosions and
gunfire. Neighborhoods that were
blasted and burned out in March
are still flat. Bu! Dacca is again
full of people. rickshaws and com·
merce and looks as though it is
nearly back to nonnal.
In many populous areas in the
countryside crops are growing. and
if there are serious food shortages
they are not evident.
The political background to this
strife is easy enough to trace. East
and West Pakistan. separated from
each other by 900 miles of Indian
territory, share a belief in the Mus-
lim faith but little else. The Bengalis
of the east speak a different lan-
guage from the Urdu of the west;
they have different cultural and
social traditions and even look dif·
ferent. The Bengalis have long reo
garded the Punjabi of West Pakistan
as economic exploiters of the eastern
Latent Bengali yearning for au-
tonomy from West Pakistan came
to a head last l\1arch and some
Bengali leaders called for outright
secession and creation of a new
Bengali nation, Bangala Desh. On
March 25, West Pakistan's army-
East Pakistani miltary units had
joined the rebels-moved into Ben-
gal as an invasion force. They have
applied an iron hand to the admin-
istration of the region ever since.
Just how many persons were kilo
led in the process remains one of the
many persisting controversies. The
Government forces have never dis-
closed their own estimates, saying
only that "enemy dead are not
counted, they are thrown into the
river." Estimates range all the way
from 10,000 to several hundred
thousand killed. In any case, West
Pakistan's three regular divisions
Washington Post Staff 'I,\'ritc:r
All the Bengali diplomats 3t the
Pakistani embassy in W.lshington
and the Pakistani mission to the
United Nations resigned yesterday,
declared their allegiance to the pro-
yisional Bangia Desh Government
and sought political asylum in the
United States.
"Our very presence was a dis-
service to our cause at home," said
the group's chief spokesman at a
press conference here of 14 defec-
Sayyid A. Karim, the No.2 man
in Pakistan's U.N. mission. said
that he and his colleagues had
thought it would be useful to try
influencing policy from within but
that they were completely isolated
by the West Pakistanis while their
continued presence was exploited
in the central government's propa·
U.S. officials said privately that
Washington would follow the Amer-
ican tradition of granting political
The Bengalis, who have already
opened a small BangIa Desh office
at the United Nations, said they
were considering what form their
political representation in Washing-
ton should take.
Bengali sources said the U.S. gov-
ernment has indicated that it would
bave no objection to the creation
of an office here as long as its mem-
bers register as foreign agents.
I Six of the 14 were accredited
Idiplomats at the embassy here. in·
cluding the deputy chief of mission.
Enayet Karim. and the political and
economic counselors. S.A.M.S. Ki-
bria and A.M.A. Muhith.
Their resignation left at the em-
bassy 11 of the diplomats accredited
before the Pakistani civil war. in-
cluding military and naval attaches.
But the ambassador has brought in
several loyal West Pakistani diplOe
mates from Canada and elsewhere
and the embassy's work will not be
crippled by the resignations.
"The working conditions here,"
said the chief spokesman, "clearly
revealed the grand design of the
Yahya regime to turn Eas! Pakistan
into a colony of West Pakistan."
Except for Karim from the U.K,
the other seven defectors were
nondiplomatic administratiive per-
sonnel, most of whom had already
been dismissed for their pro-Bengaij
Karim said U.N. Secretary Gen-
eral U Thant had told him that he
considered war between Pakistan
and India to be inevitable.
There are still four or five Ben-
galis at the embassy and four or five
at the U.N. mission in minor admin-
istrative and secretarial positions.
There was an unusually large pro-
portion of Bengalis at the Washing-
ton embassy. In most posts they
were only represented by one or two
persons, even though East Pakistan
is more populous than the dominant
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
The seven diplomats alii
have their wives children with
them, but they said they still have
and other close relatives Ilal Ysaid that since the defectors had Ito the
in Bengal. given political reasons for their res- made that some of
Pakistani Ambassador Agha Hi- ignations, "it is unnecesary for me timized in this mission:'
Forznula •••
they have
were vic-
Hong Kong.
President A. M. Yahya Khan's
announcement of new plans for gOv-
erning troubled Pakistan constitutes
a final repudiation of the
rule he said was his goal when he
seiud power two years ago.
Instead, he has chosen to make
indefinite the 12-year-old rule of
both wings by the West Pakistan·
dominated army. The main new ele·
ment will be an attempt to give the
army some civilian camouflage and
thus hand the ceuntry's frec·world
money donors an excuse to back
away from the de facIO aid suspen-
sion they adopted in Paris last week,
with the United States aside. But
even without foreign aid, he warned,
the army intends to work its will.
have the National Assembly draft in effect, a call for any collabora-
the constitution that was to be its tionists among the Bengalis to step
first major task and assignment of forvr'iud, So far, the army claims
that job to a committee of experts to have won over some two dozen
instead. This will effectively wipe of the more than 300 Awami
out the results of last December's leaguers elected to the national and
elections, The Awami League had provincial assemblies.
won its absolute majority in the 4. Use of by-elections to put men
Assembly on a platform demanding acceptable to thc army in the seats
broad constitutional autonomy that of the autonomists and any unca-
would have enabled East Bengal to operative or dead Awami Leaguers.
wrest control of its economy from Coupled with President "'ahya's reo
the 22 industrialist families that ne\val of the treason accusation
share control of \Ves[ Pakistan with against Sheikh Mujibur Rahman.
the army. head of the :\ wami League. this
2. Advance that the con./ means that the only man who has
stitutional experts must provide a led a majority in Pakistan
strong central government. This will since the Muslim League disinte-
assure that East Bengal's economy grated nearly 20 years ago will be
and government will remain under stricken from the assembly roster
control of West Pakistan, 1,000 in favor of someone yet to be ap-
miles away. proved by the army.
111 3. Indefinite extension of the ban 1Il 111 .,.
His decision seems certain to set that was imposed on the Awami To the Bengalis who gave the
up an intense behind-the·scenes de- league-Pakistan's majority politi· Awami leacue 167 of East Pak·
bate among member countries of cal party-on f'.iarch 25; the night istan's 169 s;ats in the National As·
the Pakistan-aid group during the the army shot and burned its way sembly last December, such a pro-
four months he says it will take to into control of Dacca. But individ· gram can only reconfirm what be·
put his plan into effect. ual Awami Leaguers who did not came obvious the night the army
President Yahya's new plan Willi partake of what the army calls "an· struck: their choice must be be·
have these major effects: ti·state activities" may still take any tween total subservience and total
I. Abandonment of any effort to. offices to which they were elected- independence.
Several impartial observers who
have visited East Bengali recently
have privately given varying esti·
mates of the carnage, but all guess
that the number killed by the army
alone runs into hundreds of thou·
Their guesses may ultimately
prove to be better indicators of the
horror of what they saw than of the
actual numbers dead.
But when the thousands of non·
Bengalis killed by the enraged East
Pakistanis are added to the tens
of thousands apparently killed by
the army, at least one prospect
seems certain: The middle road at·
tempted by the Awami League-
economic freedom for East Bengal
but a loose political and defense
association under a united Pakistan
-is no longer thinkable for either
In these circumstances; General
Yahya's plan promises to become a
formula for prolonged carnage on
both sides-and vcry likely for can·
tinuing increases in the number of
Bengali refugees in India. which
claims it already has more than si.x
million of them.
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in custody at Karachi airport.
Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Chief of the banned Awami League, was arrested from
his residence, in Dacca, by the local authorities, ~ t 0130 hours, on March 26, 197 I.
Mujib Trial Slirs Concern
Friends of Pakistan around the
world view with deep concern the
decision to bring the East Pakistani
leader, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, to
trial before a special military court.
The Sheikh, who was arrested last
March at the time of the Army's
crackdown on his autonomy move-
ment in East Pakistan, is accused of
''waging war against Pakistan" and
. other offenses - charges that carry
the death penalty.
Admittedly, whether or not the
Sheikh should be brought to trial
is a matter solely within Pakistan's
jurisdiction. But there are factors
in the case which justify the world-
wide concern.
In last December's national elec-
tions, Sheikh Mujib's Awami
League won a majority of seats in
the National Assembly which was
to draft a new Constitution for Pak-
istan. But talks on the formation of
a government broke down over the
Sheikh's demands for broad auton-
omy for East Pakistan. It was then
that the Army moved in.
Sheikh Mujib remains a popular
hero in his home province. Many
would doubt whether his drive to
obtain autonomy for the East Ben-
galis could be considered treason-
able. A harsh sentence
after a secret trial
deplorable impression. It would
only exacerbate the deep rift now
dividing West and East Pakistan-a
rift which has steadily worsened as
a result of the Army's merciless re-
pression of the Bengalis' aspira-
tions .
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
for or humanitarian towards
a elected leader. A fair trial under the ordin-
ary laws of the land a court .is the least that
was due to the Sheikh and the least President
Khan in honour could have ordered.
It is difficult to think that the President of Pakistan
does not that the trial of the Sheikh
can serve to aggravate the situation in East """"""...1'\ ......
which can down for ever force of arms.
to seek a' he has to
continue to his trust force....
adds lustre to his mill-
nW"""""rfulf'C> he has or
turnmlg a deaf ear to the
The secret a tribunal
a hundred miles from Ha'waJPUlldi,
Awami leader, Sheikh 1'I.A" •• ;;;a..•• ... l:'taJbman,
is believed to have started a few ago, has
world Persons as diverse as the Prime Minister
of the World Council of and a '-""" ..·.nlA.II
Committee for the Defence of Human Rights in East
have voiced their but to no
of the head of the Awami whose
was the victor
Pakistan's first late
The sheikh is now the
in a secret trial staged
Courtesy of MMR Jalal
THE LATIN C1Il..lL1f..........lI.-..a. .../C1Il.A.
....... into account the nl'()VUnOlm
Declaration of Human ... \.JlJIf,U".,.
poses of the Charter of
International Convention on
Conscious that human " traru;ceJldS
of race, reJ1g1on, UllDgll8g'e,
Condemns the brutal mnmression
the deliberate of
CO!1I.SCIIOUS elements of intellectuals and the
..I.'W'U of a of terror in East Bengal the
Pakistan which has caused exodus of more
than millions of refugees to India-an exodus which
continues and which has Pr<JKlUlcea t€:nsilons
in the area;
Calls upon the Government of Pakistan to desist from
committing further violation of human rights and of law
and stop mili tary repression, respect the life of
the leader Rahman, under
and enter into immediate negotiations with the
already elected representatives ot the people with the
of achieving a political solution of the pro'ble;m
to East Bengal; in the faith that such a solu-
tion cannot be achieved means and that it is
a niinimum essential condition for the return of l"Ohlt'ro.OC
to their motherland, with sufficient guarantees of their
the international to extend di-
as wen as through international organizations, to
the sheltered by India in a of humani-
tarianism and to the of East Bengal and
to exercise all their influence over the Government of
rWUSK;an, with the of a
Courtesy of MMR Jalal

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