Mujib’s six points worried the government and West Pakistani politicians as these were considered a preamble to the succession of East Pakistan. The six points included:

1. Pakistan would have a federal structure of government based on the spirit of the Lahore Resolution of 1940, with a Parliament elected on the basis of universal adult franchise.

2. The central government would have authority only in defence and foreign affairs, and all the other subjects would be handled by the federating units of the state of Pakistan.

3. There would be two freely convertible currencies for Pakistan’s two wings or two separate reserve banks for the two regions of the country.

4. The power of taxation and revenue collection would be vested in the federating units.

5. There would be two separate accounts for foreign exchange reserves for the two wings of Pakistan (East and West).

6. East Pakistan would have a separate militia or paramilitary force as a measure of its security.

The intrigues and clandestine aspirations are highlighted by Golam Waheed Choudhury the communications minister, who hailed from East Pakistan in his book, ‘The Last Days of United Pakistan,’ “When Mujib’s party was debating Yahya’s scheme of power under the LFO of 1970, Mujib was reported to have said to his inner cabinet that his sole aim was to establish Bangladesh.

Yahya was presented with a tape-recorded account of these talks of Mujib with his close associates. Mujib was unmistakably heard saying: ‘My aim is to establish Bangladesh; I will tear the LFO into pieces as soon as the elections are over. Who could challenge me once the elections are over?’

He also hinted to his colleagues about help from ‘outside sources’, presumably from India. When Yahya listened to this ‘political music’ played by his intelligence services, he was bewildered. He could instantly recognise Mujib’s voice and the substance of his talk.”

Mujib held three meetings with Yahya at the president house in Dhaka in November and December 1970 and during these meetings, Mujib made a solemn promise that he would show the draft constitution before presenting it to the national assembly.

He assured Yahya that his six-point programme did not imply a division of the country and that Yahya’s five points of the LFO and his own six points would be incorporated in the future constitution.

Golam Waheed Choudhury in his book ‘The Last Days of United Pakistan’ ponders “The whole Yahya-Mujib dialogue during the three secret meetings was, as usual, taped and I heard the tape-recorded version of the talks. Nobody listening to the tape-recorded version could blame Yahya.

However, I also obtained a copy of the preliminary draft constitution prepared by the experts of the Awami League, in which there was no hope for united Pakistan. The division of the country was not formally proposed, but a rigid and comprehensive interpretation of the Six-Point Programme was in the draft. If the six points were incorporated in toto, there could hardly be a federal union.”

On 23 March 1971, the Awami League delegation arrived at the president’s house for negotiations and the car that brought them bore the flag of an independent Bangladesh.

During the discussion, a member of the Awami League team stated that Mujib had instructed him to change ‘Federation of Pakistan’ to ‘Confederation of Pakistan’ in the draft of negotiations documents. The members of the government team exclaimed that a confederation would imply an agreement between two sovereign states and that such an arrangement had not been brought up or discussed. It was further elaborated that confederation was synonymous with the break-up of Pakistan and therefore not acceptable.

No further meeting took place between Mujib and Yahya after 22 March. There was a final meeting between Yahya’s negotiating team and the Awami League delegation on 24 March.

In the meantime, all of the West Pakistani leaders other than those from PPP held meetings with Mujib and tried to persuade him to avoid confrontation, but Mujib was in no mood for any compromise. A cascade of events resulted in rebellion in East Pakistan and the imposition of a military solution by the Pakistani government.

Oriana Fallaci, the Italian journalist had earlier interviewed Indira and Bhutto interviewed Mujib in February 1972; she had predicted Mujib’s downfall to him at the end of her interview.

Mujib during the interview scorned her repeatedly, including when she questioned him about the atrocities committed by the Mukti Bahini on 18 December 1971 on those perceived supportive of Pakistan. Mujib became more and more agitated and finally accused Fallaci that she was a prosecutor.

At this point, Fallaci’s patience had run out; she got up and told Mujib that she was leaving Bangladesh and would never set foot in his country and that Mujib was a scoundrel, a mad hysterical..

In a television interview in Dacca on 21 February 1972, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman professed, ‘The struggle for independence began in 1948 and through movements in 1952, 1954, 1962, 1969, 1970 and at last in 1971, it culminated in the independence of Bengal through arms’ struggle. Even in 1947, we could realise that Bengalis would be totally exploited by West Pakistan.’