Bangladeshis demand trial of Gen (retd) Moeen U Ahmed

Discussion in 'Bangladesh Defence Forum' started by idune, Jun 16, 2009.

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  1. idune
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    A Silent Coup in Bangladesh
    A major power struggle occurred in the military quarters recently.

    Earlier the nation witnessed scores of failed and successful, both bloody and bloodless coup d'état or mutinies since 1975. Military brought General Ziaur Rahman and General H.M. Ershad in power and their remnants are still enjoying major slice in politics.

    In the current power struggle, occurs intermittently since Lieutenant General Moeen Uddin Ahmed who was catapulted into helms of affairs of the state power which was actually engineered by four 'Khalifas' (conspirators) on January 11, 2007 – popularly known as 1/11.

    Has General Moeen been able to consolidate power? Will he be able to govern the nation at the time when political freedom is void? Who gained an upper hand in the latest power struggle? These questions are from the curious mind of enthusiastic citizens, who are cut off from real news from Bangladesh press at a moment when media is controlled by emergency rules.

    In the recent power struggle Principal Staff Officer (PSO) General Masud Uddin Chowdhury has become a casualty. He had to clear his desk for a second time in less than a week. Chief coordinator of the corruption-busting task forces, the general has now been transferred to the foreign ministry for possible appointment as an ambassador. In fact asked to leave the country.

    The second casualty is Military Secretary to the President (MSP) Mohammad Aminul Karim who has been transferred to the top military institution National Defence College in the outskirts of capital Dhaka. As a consolation he has been promoted to Lieutenant General.

    General Masud and General Karim are among the 'Khalifas' who engineered the 1/11 since 2000. However the fate of the other two 'Khalifas' are yet to be known. If the other two are axed it could be concluded that General Moeen is heading for a clear win for consolidating his power base and possibly implement his desire for restoration of democracy.

    The four Khalifas used the good offices of retired Major Sayeed Iskander, the blue-eyed brother of former prime minister Begum Khaleda Zia (who also responsible as Defence Minister & Supreme Armed Forces Commander) who manipulated themselves in coveted military positions soon after 2001 October election.

    As Khaleda Zia returned to power in 2001, General Masud, then a brigadier general, was made head of the Counter-Intelligence Bureau at the Directorate General of Forces Intelligence (DGFI).

    They pulled General Moeen U Ahmed of the 1st BMA (Bangladesh Military Academy) by super-seceding Major General Jamil D. Ahsan, Bir Pratik - the last serving Mukti Bahini officer to become the coveted military chief. General Jamil conceded and accepted diplomatic assignment to Libya in 2002.

    Major Iskander played a key role in recommending his course mate General Moeen to make him the military chief. He also recommended to Prime Minister Office (PMO) to promote Masud, the last of the dreaded Jatiya Rakkhi Bahini to take command of the 9th Infantry Division. The reason for his recommendation was because Iskander's trusted comrade General Masud is the brother-in-law. General Masud incidentally is an engineer and has no experience in commanding infantry or armoured corps.

    The Dhaka Division plays a crucial role in taking charge of key installations in the capital, including PMO, Banga Bhaban (president's palace), international airport, power, telephone exchange, radio and TV centres.

    According to the plan General Masud send his trusted officers under the command of General Jahangir Alam Chowdhury (presently Quarter Master General) to Banga Bhaban to ask President Iajuddin Ahmed to declare state of emergency, for which he was not formerly briefed. The MSP also played a significant role to stage-manage the president.

    The position of MSP is of course very significant. Specially when the country switches to Care-taker Government after each tenure of parliamentary form of government. The President becomes the Supreme Commander and guardian of the constitution. All armed forces matters rest upon the president. General Karim was planted months ahead before the tenure Khaleda Zia ends.

    Meanwhile the key positions in the army headquarters and formation commanders are gradually filled in by East Bengal Regiment (EBR) where General Moeen was the commander.

    Chief of General Staff (CGS), Dhaka Division GOC, Chittagong GOC, military security agency and others crucial branches of the armed forces in recent months have seen new faces from the EBR. It is expected that more positions in the army headquarters will have faces from EBR.

    On the other hand, General Moeen has deliberately purged his course mates of first BMA from different positions. Former NDC chief General Zahir, recipient of 'sword of honour' has been made ambassador. So was General Rokon ud Dowla who was fired from the position of general officer commanding (GOC) of 9th Infantry Division and was replaced by General Masud. While former DGFI chief General Sadeque Hasan Rumi was transferred from DGFI, dreaded security agency to head the Directorate of Ansar and Village Defence Party and his course mates interpret as an insult for him.

    It is interesting to observe that at the height of cleansing the state of corruption and other vices, General Moeen and chief of anti-corruption task force General Masud spared his buddy Major Iskander for the help he rendered in the conspiracy against the sovereignty and constitution. He was allowed to travel abroad several times with his family, when his sister former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia was under house-arrest. In early in June he returned to Bangladesh and held parleys with General Moeen. It is time to question the integrity of the objective of anti-graft drive in Bangladesh by the military installed interim government.

    Major Iskander played a critical role in an attempt to convince his sister to agree to go into exile in Saudi Arabia. The plot foiled when Khaleda turned around giving a condition that she will leave, if her sons Tareque Rahman and Arafat Rahman are allowed to leave the country.

    Major Sayeed Iskander is indeed a unique example of rag to riches, so is his brother Shamim Iskander, a flight engineer of Bangladesh Biman airlines. His younger brother bought two worn out F-28 for Biman. After series of air accidents the aircrafts were later grounded and withdrawn from the fleet. Well none of them were accused of corruption or other crimes.

    General Moeen in making some giant steps demonstrated that he is the boss, which also caused speculations of him being ambitious. He has published "Selected Collection of General Moeen Ahmed" to ventilate his political and social mind. He with the support of DGFI has floated "Jago Bangladesh" to cheer his effort to end criminalisation of politics and institutionalisation of corruption. Well vines say that Jago Bangladesh is recruiting political elements in small towns, which may soon dawn as a political party. Political activists in upazila (small administrative towns) and districts have seen induction from once outlawed Freedom Party and of course from mainstream Awami League, Bangladesh Nationalists Party (BNP) and Jatiya Party.

    Nevertheless, the West does not want to see Bangladesh military become another Frankenstein as in Pakistan. In recent change of hearts and minds of the military generals in Pakistan, Nepal and Thailand have given hopes that democracy will be restored in Bangladesh, if not very soon.




    The South Asian: A Silent Coup in Bangladesh
  2. idune
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    General Moin’s Story—Some Comments

    Bangladesh army chief General Moin U Ahmed published a book titled “Shantir Swpney: Samayer Smriticharan” recently. I read an abridged version of the book.

    One tends to add a little fiction to facts, particularly when it comes to autobiography. General Moin could not be immune to such temptation. However, when fiction overshadows facts, eyebrows do rise.

    The army chief must be a saintly person to whom our prophet (PBUH) chose to appear in dream. I understand, according to Hadith, such chosen ones are guaranteed a place in the Heaven. How many, out of over a billion Muslims, are so fortunate! We heard former president Ershad always dreamt of the mosque he would visit the following Friday for Jummah, and a barren Roushan Ershad became pregnant and delivered Shaad at old age.

    General Moin has a fixed political orientation. He made more political speeches than the politicians following the 1/11, an offence under military law. He did not make secret of his preference for a major political party and admiration for its supreme leader, at the same time condemning the other in those speeches. As such, in the 2-year run of the Moin backed Care Taker Government, it was his loved leader everywhere, and others were totally eclipsed.

    Lot of mystery shrouded the 1/11 that brought in the two-year long emergency rule in Bangladesh. Thanks to the general for sharing his side of the story.

    We expect the other star of the 1/11, former president Dr. Iajuddin Ahmed, to do the same, for the sake of clarity. However, I am not so sure if he would do us that favor. He was known to listen to HMB (His Masters’ Voice) more than required. He listened to Hawa Bhaban for 5 years, even perhaps when the BNP relinquished its authority. He listened to the military’s dictation on 1/11 and then after. Even during his 1 month tenure under Sheikh Hasina, he forgot who Ziaur Rahman was?

    Well, why blaming poor Iajuddin? The present occupant of the Bangabhaban is no better. His reported Parkinson’s disease seems to get the better of him. According to him, near god Sheikh Mujib’s daughter is the near goddess Sheikh Hasina and she could do no wrong, as such, needed nobody’s advice. He did not know where the mazar of Ziaur Rahman located, and went to lay wreaths at the tombs of lesser mortals instead! So much for the talk of honor and dignity that he was supposed to bring to the highest office of Bangladesh.

    Coming to the Shantir Swpney, the skeptics may point out some of the missing elements and glaring discrepancy.

    There was no mention of General Rezzaqul Haider Chowdhury who was reportedly appointed as the new army chief; replacing Moin, because of latter’s failure to tame the widespread violence that caused huge damage to life and property prior to 1/11. One can understand the omission.

    Subsequent reports did not corroborate General Moin’s assertion that UN was considering to withdraw Bangladesh from the global peace missions, if its army supported the elections on January 22, 2007. The UN Secretary General himself denied of any such move.

    The story he described about the events from August 15 to November 7, 1975 leaves much to be desired. However, one may not ignore the fact that he was a newly commissioned 2/Lieutenant at that time. And, according to army parlance, a 2/Lt is to be seen only, not to be heard.

    There is not much scope here to discuss the circumstances that led to the coup on August 15, 1975. One needs to walk back in time to the early 70s of Bangladesh, particularly 1974 and 1975, and then evaluate the necessity of the August coup. It would be totally unfair to judge the August coup in today’s context.

    Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was one of the great leaders of Bangladesh. Few could surpass his leadership quality and contribution towards the emancipation of then East Pakistanis for their rights. Yet, I fail to understand why he went and engaged himself in lengthy negotiations with the Pakistanis, following his master speech on March 7, 1971?

    Well, that was the Sheikh Mujib before 1971. But, what happened to Bangladesh from 1972 to 1975–the creation of the monstrous Rakkhi Bahini, the man-made famine that killed nearly half a million in 1974/75, the clamping of emergency in 1974, the introduction of one-party dictatorship through BAKSAL in 1975, the 5th, constitutional amendment in 1975 and et all? Can one forget and forgive that? Why people forgot to say Innalillah when they heard of his death?

    General Moin asserted that the August coup was done purely on personal grudge by a group of very junior army officers, while the rest of the defense forces were not involved. What then prevented the rest of the forces to act and crush that small group? Why then all the chiefs fell head over heels to present themselves before the new president Khandakar Mushataque Ahmed and publicly announce their support and allegiance to him?

    Just for information, when Brigadier Khaled Mosharraf, the army chief of general staff, was told that the tanks that were taken out on the night of the coup did not have the ammunition for their main guns, he immediately sent out a hand written note to issue shells for the cannons. Later, however, when an ambitious Khaled failed to gain any favor from the coup leaders, he started plotting against them.

    General Moin said that coup leaders were running the country from Bangabhaban, and that infuriated the senior army officers. Well, as a new born officer in the army, he was not supposed to know or see what had happened around that time. His knowledge must have been acquired from his likeminded peers.

    To refresh the memory, the new president formed a cabinet composed entirely of the elected representatives of the Awami League on August 15, 1975. Parliament and constitution were not touched. As far as I know, none of the coup leaders were within miles of power, and Mushtaque was not a character to take dictation from others. There were reports of Farooq and Dalim showing off a little; but that was their personal style and certainly did not mean any disrespect to anybody. Chiefs of defense forces and other senior officers used to visit the Bangabhaban on a regular basis those days. Can anyone of them cite an instance when an August coup officer showed any disrespect to them at any stage? Not that I heard of.

    I also learnt that most coup officers left Bangabhaban within a few days and lived with their families and in own residences, who had them.

    Also, the August coup officers were not taken out of the country by any outsider aeroplane, as mentioned by General Moin. I understand, under an arrangement between Khaled and Bangabhaban, they were allowed to leave the country temporarily, with an assurance to bring them back as soon as the situation permitted. A Bangladesh Biman aircraft was used.

    Brigadier Khaled Mosharraf and some of his over zealous cohorts had some grudge against the August 15 coup leaders. It stemmed from their failure to be part of a spectacular historic event that was instantly hailed and welcomed at home and abroad. It was a kind of frustration of missing the boat. So they decided to do something to outdo the August 15 success. The result of this conspiracy was the devastating countercoup of November 3, 1975.

    According to General Moin, he was sent to Bangabhaban to guard Khandakar Mushtaque Ahmed against any suicide attempt. This appears ludicrous. If Mushtaque wanted to commit suicide, how in the world a subaltern could stop it? 2/Lt Moin remained with the confined president almost 24 hours; hopefully not suggesting he accompanied him to bedroom and bathroom too. Our subaltern said he could go to his room to wash and change uniform only. He seemed to have no time to eat, sleep or bathe during those days. What a dedication to duty!

    From various events of those days learnt from horses’ mouth, Khandakar Mushtaque did not seem to be a coward at all, as described by our subaltern of the time. Let me tell you what I learnt.

    Khaled’s short lived coup was a battle or nerves between his small band of officers in the Dhaka cantonment and the Bangabhaban. Public life was not disturbed much, except that the electronic media was off the air. Khaled wanted Bangabhaban to surrender to his command. Mushtaque, joined by his defense adviser General M A G Osmany, flatly refused. Khaled then extended a carrot, requesting Mushtaque to continue as president while he ran the show. Brigadier Rouf and Colonel Malek went to Bangabhaban with the proposal. Mushtaque coolly replied, “If you want me to remain the president, I will be THE president, not YOUR president”.

    Frustrated at the stubbornness of the president, an arrogant Colonel Shafaat Jamil, the Dhaka Brigade Commander, stormed Bangabhaban and tried to obtain Mushataque’s resignation at gun point. Yet, Mushtaque did not budge and was kept confined there, along with Osmany. And, perhaps, our young 2/Lt Moin found himself doing guard duty there.

    According to eye witnesses, an outraged Shafaat not only misbehaved with the elderly president and General Osmany but virtually manhandled them.

    When Khaled and Co. failed to subdue Mushtaque, they decided to appoint Chief Justice A S M Sayem as the new president on November 6, 1975.

    So, why would Mushtaque kill himself? Mushtaque was a devout Muslim, and would certainly not do something that is prohibited in Islam. In any case, if he did, it would have been a windfall gift for Khaled.

    Unfortunately for Khaled, his counter coup was not accepted outside his small circle of officers, definitely not by the military at large. It was seen to undo the much heralded August 15 Revolution. Khaled was seen as an agent of Awami League, and by extension India, a fact people could not accept at that time. Arrest of Ziaur Rahman, a war hero and declarer of the independence, did not go well in the military chain of command.

    By the night of November 6, troops in the Dhaka cantonment revolted and released General Ziaur Rahman from confinement. Khaled, who was at Bangabhaban at that time, realized that his game was over. He, accompanied by Col Huda, Lt Col Haider and a few bodyguards, fled. They were intercepted and arrested at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar by10 Bengal Regiment, Khaled’s onetime loyal unit, then commanded by Lt Col Nawazish. Upon hearing the news, Zia instructed Nawazish to protect Khaled. But the angry troops killed their prize shortly afterwards.

    The troops stationed at Bangabhaban immediately aligned with the sepahi-janata (soldier-civilian) revolution, helped release Mushataque and joined the chanting mass in the caravan. All military officers at Bangabhaban fled. Col Shafaat jumped over the southern wall and broke one of his legs. He was later arrested at a ferry ghat.

    Yet, our young and brave 2/Lt singlehandedly continued to fight the popular uprising that night, a repeat of the Charge of the Light Brigade! He must have been pretty well known even as a 2/Lt, because a soldier of the revolution knew that he was commissioned only 10 months ago, so no point killing the poor soul! However, others did not perhaps think so and took him to the back of the Bangabhaban to do the ritual, according to Moin.

    It was a mass uprising; the revolutionaries do things up front. Why would they waste time to take a tiny 2/Lt to a remote and lonely area to do the job? And again, why would a Havilder look for him among throngs of people that night?

    Major Hafizuddin Ahmed, the former BNP minister and the Brigade Major (BM) to Shafaat Jamil, was a key figure to Khaled’s countercoup. Then Major (later Brigadier) Zubeyer Siddiqui played important role in rescuing Zia on November 6 night and reinstalling his authority at the army chief at 2 Field Regiment Artillery in the Dhaka cantonment. Both these officers are men of very high integrity and can throw more light on the events of November, 1975.

    Untold Facts Blog Archive General Moin?s Story?Some Comments
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  3. eastwatch
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    eastwatch SENIOR MEMBER

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    It is a June 23, 2008 news artcle, isn't it? We all are fed up with your Indian-style DECEPTION. Be like a muslim and have Imaan. No one even your Jamaati leaders want any trial of Gen. Moeen. Only a few AL leaders want it, because he put them in jails for stealing money. Have you alrerady become an AL supporter? Why such a quick change of mind?
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2010
  4. Stumper
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    Stumper FULL MEMBER

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    Stop your racist verbal attack's on Indian's. And if you cant, dont ask Indian's to be more courteous when they refer to BD as inferior (Like you asked one of the Indian Members in another thread --- When in fact he was only responding to similar phrase used for us Indian's). We love our country as much as you do to your's. Acknowledge this, if you really are ounce of human.

    I dont judge you by the Bangladeshi's i see in my city. Next time, if you want to define some Indian person's trait, define him by name. Don't generalize (I really wonder, what you would rather call the Americans war mongers ---- Buster Yankee ? ) . ... Or they dont fall under your deception definition?

    Certainly, you will acknowledge, it's more than deception which has got us to path of economic re-buildup today. And i'm equally certain, with able citizens like you, BD one day in near future will realize its true potential. Till the time, lets stop this name calling and focus on our own short comings. You still have a long way to go, before you can afford to point your finger at us. Till then .............

    Have a good day... and ... Bye.
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  5. eastwatch
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    eastwatch SENIOR MEMBER

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    Look, if Indians want respect it should ask it not by showing mean-mindedness and deceiving other countries with sweet talks and then delivering nothing. It is happening with exchange of enclaves, with the BoB sea territory, with shooting of our innocent civilians and so forth -----------.

    With this backgroud of yours what do you expect other people to describe India and and its citizens other than a bunch of deceiver? In an internationalized world you guys are behaving as if the entire world is following your racist JAT PAT system.

    Unless you solve your internal racist system, you will not respect others, and these others will keep on throwing muds at you all the time. Were not these things responsible for the partition of India? You did not feel sameness with others. Now, here you are lecturing about racism.
  6. kalu_miah
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    kalu_miah SENIOR MEMBER

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    I found this old thread and wanted to add some new information that I heard:

    - MUA's brother is sole distributor for Ashok Leyland?
    - MUA went to Dehradun Military Academy for training? Like many others who go for this training, become recruited by the host country.
    - MUA was visiting Chittagong the day before the coup, when KZ decided to replace him as they suspected his loyalty, even though this man from Feni got this position due to KZ, surpassing many senior generals
    - A young officer got a phone call from DGFI, to keep a watchful eye on movement of MUA
    - this young officer got alarmed, as this was highly unusual for DGFI to ask to watch the movement of Cheif of Armed Forces
    - so he got suspicious and informed his commanding Maj. General in Chittagong, who in turn informed MUA and that apparently sealed the fate and set the political course of Bangladesh for many years
    - MUA, after he received this info, recalled his helicopter back from Dhaka and immediately came back to Dhaka and the coup went ahead shortly there after
    - MUA's colleague Masud got upset that he was being superseded by KZ with a different officer, when he called and asked Tariq about it, Tariq was very rude with this relative of theirs. With a hurt ego Masud decided to help Moeen with his coup plot
    - Once MUA coup was in progress, the Indian Ambassador in Dhaka met with other Western Embassy's as well as UN officials to provide support for the coup, as they foresaw that this will set the stage for a comeback for "secular" Awami League and side line the "Islamist" BNP-Jamat alliance
    - After the successful coup, MUA tried to find escape routes. He got the promise of a green card from the US and also helped pro-India Awami League come to power, so they will help let him escape
    - currently he lives in NYC, as a sublet with another friend or relative (financial problems), undergoing Chemotherapy for cancer and recently got victim of dog bite
    - Pilkhana massacre was arranged by India as a revenge for the previous BDR-BSF incident, both Hasina and MUA were instructed not to intervene by their Indian handlers, MUA complied because he needed India and AL help for his safety and escape
    - currently young army officers are waiting for a chance to take revenge on Awami League, but Awami League has made full arrangements for a rigged election, so there is a good chance that AL will come to power in next election

    @MBI Munshi @asad71 @kobiraaz, can you guys please verify the above info.
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  7. mb444
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    mb444 FULL MEMBER

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    This ahole should definitely be arrested tried and charged. I wonder what happened to the dog that bit him. Hope it's ok.
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  8. MBI Munshi
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    MBI Munshi PDF THINK TANK: ANALYST

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    I became involved in events after the coup and am not surprised by the information. Most of it makes sense from what I saw.
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  9. asad71
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    asad71 PROFESSIONAL

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    1. MUA's bro Tipu is the owner of Ifad Group which had long represented Ashok Leyland. It is this link that eventually RAW used to approach MUA.

    2. Initially MUA was selected for the air force, which has a lower height requirement. He was sent to USSR because BAF did not have an air force academy till then. MUA could not make flying and opted to enter BMA. So MUA became the shortest officer in BA.

    3.No, he was not trained at Dehradun. No officer in BD armed forces have been trained at IMA or Pune. That does not include JRB officers, who were borne on the civil officers list. Masududdin belonged to JRB.

    4. That MUA has cancer is known, but hearing first time about dog bite.

    5. Difficult to believe MUA is having financial problems. He amassed a lot, and these were invested through Ifad and other sources. Another bro of MUA used to be MD of military's Trust Bank.

    6. MUA will remain the most disgraceful product of both PAF Public School,Sargodha and BMA Bhatyari.
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  10. Loki
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    Loki ELITE MEMBER

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    I heard that he's dying from cancer. Is it really true?
  11. M_Saint
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    Asad Bhai, I just want to inform U that military and general terminologies aren't always similar. U are probably thinking about basic officer's course while talking about training but there are many short, long and exchange courses as well that army goes through, and both MUA and ERSHAD had gone IND to take such courses. If I remember correctly, Ershad attended 'National institute of defence' of IND officially but unofficially got RAW's sobok in Dehradun. Similarly MUA went to IND/Dehradun to take training as well. Please comment on these, thanks. Following is a bit of Ershad's army profile. I'll post MUA'S one after digging more.

    HUSSAIN MUHAMMAD ERSHAD
    Profession :Commissioned from Pakistan Army in 1952 .
    Qualified in PSC Course from Pakistan and NDC Course from India .
    Promoted to the rank of Lt. General and appointed as the chief of Bangladesh Army in 1st December 1978 .
    Retired from Bangladsh Army in October 1986 .
    President of People's Republic of Bangladesh from 1982- 1990 .
    Elected as the Member of Parliment in 1991 and 1996 .
    Chairman of Bangladesh Jatyyo Party .

    HM Ershad Biography

    He takes chemo in NY but not dying yet, AFAIK. Recently he was also bitten by dog.