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Sheikh Mujibur Rahman: Bhutto Saved My Life By Foiling Execution Order

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Zulfikar Ali Bhutto saved Sheikh Mujib ur-Rehman’s life by foiling the execution order issued by Gen Yahya, as he was smuggled out of the prison where he had been imprisoned, said Mujibur Rahman, according to a story published by The New York Times in the Archive.

The story dated Jan 17, 1972 is based upon an interview given to Newsweek.

“Sheik Mujibur Rahman has disclosed that an order for his execution in the final hours of the India‐Pakistan war was thwarted by Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who arranged to have him smuggled out of a prison where he had been in solitary confinement for nine months. At the time, Mr Bhutto had not yet replaced Gen Agha Mohammad Yahya Khan as Pakistan’s President.”

“With the war almost over and Bhutto coming to power, Yahya said he wanted to hang Sheikh Mujibur Rahman the same day as the fall of Bengal,” Mujib said.

Mujib said: “One night, there was a move to have me killed inside the jail despite Bhutto’s efforts to stop Yahya from carrying out his plan,” and Bhutto arranged for the superintendent of police in charge of his security to get him out.

Mujib said he was taken from the jail about 3 am to the superintendent’s house, where he remained for two days. By then, Pakistani forces in East Pakistan had surrendered to India and Gen Yahya was relinquishing power to Bhutto, who ultimately released Mujib on Jan 8.

Read full story here: Mujib Says That Bhutto Foiled An Execution Order by Yahya

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