Syed Faruque Rahman

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Syed Faruque Rahman
Service/branchBangladesh Army
RankLieutenant Colonel

Lieutenant Colonel Syed Faruque Rahman (also spelled Farooq or Faruk) (Bengali: সৈয়দ ফারুক রহমান) (died 28 January 2010) was the 2IC of 1st Bengal Lancers Regiment of Bangladesh Army He was the chief organiser of the assassination of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founding President of Bangladesh on 15 August 1975. Rahman led a group of junior army officers who overthrew Sheikh Mujib's regime and installed Khondaker Mushtaque Ahmed as president.[1]


In 1974 Rahman was placed in charge of recovering weapons in Demra, Munshiganj District, Narayanganj District, and Narsingdi District. He had experienced some things which made him critical of the Bangladesh Awami League government.[2] In 1975 Rahman was a Major in the Bangladesh Army. He spoke against Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to his fellow Army officers. He also told them that Sheikh Mujibur Rahman would give Bangladesh to India and that Sheikh Mujibur Rahman would establish a monarchy in Bangladesh.[3] He and Major Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan discussed ways of removing Sheikh Mujibur Rahman from power and asked Brigadier General Ziaur Rahman for support. Zia expressed his inability to support them.[4] Zia asked them to do what they think is necessary.[2] They were supported covertly by senior cabinet minister Khondaker Mushtaque Ahmed who was introduced to Rahman by Major Khandaker Abdur Rashid.[2] On 12 August 1975 he discussed the plans with his fellow officers at his wedding anniversary party at the Officers Club, Dhaka. There the officers finalised 15 August 1975 as the day they would launch the coup.[2]

On 14 August 1975, Syed Faruque Rahman met Captain Abdul Aziz Pasha, Captain Bazlul Huda, Major Khandaker Abdur Rashid, Major Shariful Haque Dalim, Major S.H.M.B Noor Chowdhury, Major Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan, Major Rashed Chowdhury, and other officer met in his office to finalize the plan. According to the plan Rahman commanded the tanks of the Bengal Lancers.[2] Sheikh Mujibur Rahman was killed in his house by Captain Bazlul Huda and Major Noor on 15 August 1975.[5] Immediately after the killing, the officers rendezvoused at the Bangladesh Betar office,[2] and installed Khondakar Mushtaque Ahmed as the new president of Bangladesh.[6] Khondakar Mushtaque called the assassins Surja Santan (the gallant sons) and passed the Indemnity Ordinance which protected the assassins from legal prosecution.[7]

Rahman was promoted to the rank of lieutenant colonel and held a position of power in the new regime until it was overthrown in a counter-coup by pro-Mujib officers led by Maj. Gen. Khaled Mosharraf, who ousted Khondakar Mushtaque. However, 7 November 1975 coup against the Mosharraf by Lt. Col. Abu Taher brought Maj. Gen. Ziaur Rahman to power. Ziaur Rahman was freed by Major Mohiuddin Ahmed. Ziaur Rahman after assuming power appointed the assassins in the diplomatic corps in foreign posts with the exception o Syed Faruque Rahman and Sultan Shahriar Rashid Khan refused to accept the diplomatic posts.[4] In 1979, the Bangladeshi parliament under Ziaur Rahman's Bangladesh Nationalist Party converted the Indemnity ordinance into an official act of parliament. Faruque Rahman was dismissed from Bangladesh Army for his role in Mutinies in Savar Cantonment and Bogra Cantonment and sent abroad. The assassins were removed from government service after they tried to launch a coup against Ziaur Rahman in 1980.[7]

After the assassination of Ziaur Rahman in 1981, Rahman returned to active politics by founding the Freedom Party and running for the presidency against Lt. Gen. Hussain Muhammad Ershad in 1986. He maintained ties with ULFA in Assam, India.[8][9]

Trial and execution[edit]

In 1996, the Awami League under the leadership of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman's daughter, Sheikh Hasina won the general election and became the Prime Minister of Bangladesh. Under her party's majority, the Indemnity Act was repealed and a court case initiated over the killing of Mujib and his family.[10] In August 1996 he was arrested by the Bangladesh Police.[11] In 1998, the Dhaka High Court sentenced Syed Faruque Rahman to death. After the Awami League's defeat in the 2001 general election, the BNP government of Begum Khaleda Zia slowed down the proceedings in the Mujib murder case. In October 2007 he filed an appeal with the Bangladesh Supreme Court.[12] After Sheikh Hasina returned to power in 2009, the court case was restarted. After Rahman's plea for clemency was denied by the Supreme Court of Bangladesh, he was executed along with other plotters on 28 January 2010.[13][14][15]

Personal life[edit]

Rahman's son, Syed Tareq Rahman, is a leader of the Freedom Party founded by him.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Bitter legacy of Bangladeshi hero's killing". 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Farooq's confession". The Daily Star. 19 November 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  3. ^ "Faruque provoked all with monarchy story". The Daily Star. 6 October 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  4. ^ a b "Ziaur Rahman involved in incidents of Aug 15". The Daily Star. 8 October 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  5. ^ "Huda, Noor shot Bangabandhu". The Daily Star. 7 October 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  6. ^ Newton, Michael (17 April 2014). Famous Assassinations in World History: An Encyclopedia [2 volumes]. ABC-CLIO. p. 15. ISBN 9781610692861.
  7. ^ a b "Moshtaq hailed killers as 'Surja Santan'". The Daily Star. 12 October 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  8. ^ Maitra, Kiranshankar (15 September 2011). Nagaland : The Land of Sunshine. Anjali Publishers. p. 129. ISBN 9788189620929.
  9. ^ Maitra, Kiran Shankar (4 February 1998). The Nagas rebel and insurgency in the North-East. Vikas Pub. House. p. 165.
  10. ^ "Mujib's killers case: A chronology of events". The Hindu. PTI. 19 November 2009. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 25 January 2018.CS1 maint: others (link)
  11. ^ Press, The Associated (18 August 1996). "3 Face Charges in Plot For Bangladesh Coup". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  12. ^ "Bangabandhu case hearing resumes today". The Daily Star. 17 October 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  13. ^ "Bangladesh executes Mujib killers". BBC. 27 January 2010. Retrieved 28 January 2010.
  14. ^ "BNP demands fresh investigation into the assassination of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  15. ^ "Bangladesh Supreme Court Verdict: Bangabandhu Murder Case- Justice delayed but not denied | Asian Tribune". Retrieved 1 May 2016.
  16. ^ "Families of Bangabandhu killers found closely linked". Retrieved 25 January 2018.