Khaleda to appear in court Wednesday

Khaleda Zia will appear in court in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case on Wednesday after a gap of one and a half months.

Published : 23 Dec 2014, 06:10 PM
Updated : 23 Dec 2014, 06:10 PM

The BNP chairperson's lawyer Sanaullah Mia on Tuesday told of her plan to appear before the court.

The former prime minister last appeared on Nov 9 before a makeshift court established in Alia Madrasa in Old Dhaka but had skipped several dates since then.

Dhaka’s Special Judge Basudeb Roy began recording statements of the witnesses on Nov 11 after several deferments since the court framed charges against her on Mar 17 this year.

The court could not complete recording of testimony of the prosecutor and prime witness, Harun-or-Rashid of the Anti Corruption Commission, on the last four dates due to repeated postponement sought by Khaleda’s lawyers.

The court’s new judge, Abu Ahmed Jamadar, who replaced Roy, will conduct the hearing on Wednesday.

Roy framed charges against the BNP chief in the Zia Charitable Trust corruption case, too, on Sept 11.

After her futile efforts to get the cases, filed during the 2007-08 caretaker government, quashed, Khaleda challenged the legality of Roy’s appointment.

After exhausting all legal means to stop the cases, her lawyers started filing applications on different pleas.

ACC lawyers allege Khaleda’s defence is filing ‘illogical applications’ to defer the case proceedings.

The BNP, however, alleges the government filed the ‘false cases with the mean political motive to defame’ the BNP chief and keep her off politics.

Khaleda’s son Tarique Rahman, now staying in London, is also an accused in the two cases. His lawyers appear before the court for him.

In the cases, the BNP chairperson has been accused of embezzling more than Tk 50 million when she was the prime minister of Bangladesh.