Thursday, May 23, 2019 | ePaper

Zia Charitable case

Hearing on appeal Apr-30

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Staff Reporter :
The High Court (HC) on Tuesday fixed April 30, 2019, for hearing on whether the court will accept BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's appeal petition filed challenging the lower court verdict that sentenced her to seven years imprisonment in Zia Charitable Trust case.
The HC bench of Justice Obaidul Hassan and Justice Kuddus Zaman passed the order after Khaleda Zia's lawyer Zainul Abedin prayed to the court to fix a date for hearing on the appeal petition.
Advocate Zainul Abedin said, "We prayed in the appeal petition for its admission hearing. The court fixed April 30 for it. There is a provision for bail hearing besides appeal admission hearing. Bail petition has been filed. Hope, the court will also hear the bail petition as well as the appeal petition."
On November 18, 2018, BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia filed the appeal with the High Court challenging the lower court verdict that sentenced her to seven years imprisonment in Zia Charitable Trust case.
She submitted the appeal through her lawyers to the HC seeking acquittal in the case.
On that day, Barrister Kayser Kamal, a lawyer for Khaleda Zia, told the reporters that the BNP chairperson in her appeal prayed to the HC to scrap the lower court verdict, stay the fine imposed on her and grant bail to her in the case.
He said that in total 24 grounds had been included in the appeal under which the HC may consider her prayers.
Citing from the grounds, Barrister Kayser said that the lower court had "illegally convicted and sentenced" Khaleda Zia in Zia Charitable Trust case.
The initiation of the case was "illegal" as there was "no corruption" in establishing the Zia Charitable Trust as a private trust, he said, adding that the Zia Charitable Trust was established with the money of the BNP leaders and activists.
The lawyer also said there was no scope for the government to interfere with Zia Charitable Trust.
A special court in Dhaka on October 29 convicted Khaleda in connection with the Zia Charitable Trust case and sentenced her to seven-year rigorous imprisonment.
The court also awarded similar jail terms to Harris Chowdhury, Political Secretary to the then Prime Minister Khaleda, his Assistant Personal Secretary Ziaul Haq Munna, and Monirul Islam Khan, Assistant Personal Secretary of then Dhaka mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka.
The Anti-Corruption Commission filed the Zia Charitable Trust case against Khaleda, Harris, Ziaul and Monirul with Tejgaon police on August 8, 2011.
The BNP chief landed in jail being sentenced to five-year imprisonment in the Zia Orphanage Trust case on February 8, 2018. The HC on October 30, 2018, enhanced her punishment to 10 years' imprisonment in the Zia Orphanage Trust case after dismissing her appeal.

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