Razakars was the name given to a paramilitary force organized by the Pakistan Army during the Pakistani Civil war in 1971. The word, originating from Persian, literally means "volunteer". It was composed of mostly pro-Pakistani Bengalis and Urdu-speaking migrants to erstwhile East Pakistan (now Bangladesh). Initially, the force was under the command of local pro-Pakistani committees. But through the East Pakistan Razakar Ordinance (promulgated by General Tikka Khan on 1 June, 1971) and a Ministry of Defence, Pakistan, ordinance (promulaged 7 September,1971), Razakars were recognized as members of the Pakistan Army.