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6 December, 2017 12:21:01 AM / LAST MODIFIED: 6 December, 2017 10:49:14 AM

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Khaleda graft cases near conclusion

BNP chief gets bail in 2 cases on surrender
Staff Reporter
Khaleda graft cases near conclusion

BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday surrendered in a Dhaka court and secured bail in the Zia Orphanage Trust and Zia Charitable Trust corruption cases. Following this, Khaleda gave her concluding defence statements in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case.

After this major development, the trial in the case has reached the final stage, with the Dhaka special judge’s court-5 setting December 19–21 for hearing the concluding arguments from both parties. The court will then deliver its verdict.

Yesterday morning, the BNP chief went to the makeshift court at Bakhshibazar to surrender. The judge, Akhtaruzzaman, then passed her bail petition, five days after he had issued arrest warrants against her in the two graft cases.

In her concluding statement that lasted for around three hours, Khaleda accused the Sheikh Hasina government of a political conspiracy against her. “The cases were filed to keep me and my son, Tarique Rahman, away from politics. They were filed with a political ill-motive to harass the Zia family,” she told the court.

“Most of the time, the Prime Minister and some of her Cabinet members are giving false statements to implicate me. There are similarities in the allegations made by the state witness, Harun-or-Rashid, and the statements given by the PM and her ministers against me. It is clear that the government has made Harun-or-Rashid the plaintiff as well as the

information officer of the case with an ill-motive,” she said.

“It's a settled issue that Zia Orphanage Trust is a private trust, and it was not established with government funds. Assistance was taken from foreign donors in accordance with the law. Moreover, no trust member has ever made any allegation of financial irregularities,” Khaleda said during her deposition, which started around 11.37am and continued till 2.24pm with just a four-minute break.

“The plaintiff has failed to provide any specific allegations against me in the case. But Harun-or-Rashid filed the case and submitted the charge-sheet with false and fabricated charges. The case is a political conspiracy against me and my family,” the BNP chief added. She pleaded for justice from the court.

A number of BNP leaders and activists, including Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, Barrister Moudud Ahmed, Nazrul Islam Khan and Joynul Abedin Faruk, were present in the court.

A large number of party workers had also gathered in and around the old part of the city ahead of the BNP chief’s court appearance.

On November 30, Khaleda failed to appear in court for the trial due to a strike enforced by Left parties. The court then cancelled Khaleda’s bail and issued arrest warrants against her.

Earlier on October 19, the court had granted the BNP chief an ad-interim bail after she surrendered and sought bail.

As per the case history, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) had filed the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case at Ramna police station on July 3, 2008. The ACC charged Khaleda, her son, Tarique Rahman, and four others for misappropriating over Tk. 2.10 crore of grants from a foreign bank for the orphanage.

On August 8, 2011, the ACC filed the Zia Charitable Trust graft case at Tejgaon police station, accusing Khaleda and three others of abusing power to raise funds from unknown sources.

SR

 

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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