This Star file photo shows BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia waves at the media while she was on her way to appear before a court in the capital to fight graft charges against her.
The High Court cleared the way for the lower court to run the trial proceedings against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and eight others in Zia Orphanage Trust and Zia Charitable Trust corruption cases.
The court today summarily rejected two petitions filed by Khaleda challenging indictment orders against in the two graft cases.
The HC bench of Justice Borhanuddin and Justice KM Kamrul Kader passed the orders after hearing arguments on the petitions.
On March 19, the Special Judge's Court-3 of Dhaka framed charges against Khaleda, her son Tarique Rahman and seven others in the cases filed by the ACC, and fixed May 21for recording depositions of the witnesses.
The BNP chairperson on April 13 filed two separate revision petitions with the HC seeking cancellation of the indictment orders against her and eight others.
Expressing disappointment over the High Court orders, Khandker Mahbub Hossain, a counsel for Khaleda, told reports that they would move appeal before the Appellate Division of Supreme Court challenging the High Court order.
Meanwhile, Anti-Corruption Commission’s lawyer Khurshid Alam Khan said the High Court rejected Khaleda Zia’s petition as the lower court has framed charges against Khaleda and others properly.
There is no legal bar for the lower court to record deposition of witnesses in the cases, he said.
ZIA ORPHANAGE GRAFT CASE
Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on July 3 in 2009 filed the case against Khaleda, Tarique and four others on charge of embezzling over Tk 2.10 crore by forming the “fake” trust.
The four other accused are former BNP lawmaker Kazi Salimul Haque, businessman Sharfuddin Ahmed, former principal secretary Dr Kamal
Uddin Siddiqui and Momenur Rahman, nephew of BNP founder Ziaur Rahman.
ZIA CHARITABLE TRUST GRAFT CASE
The ACC on August 8 in 2011 filed the case with Tejgaon police against Khaleda and three others for abusing power in setting up the charity named after late president Ziaur Rahman.
The three accused are Harris Chowdhury, Khaleda's former political secretary; Ziaul Islam Munna, assistant private secretary (APS) of Harris; and Monirul Islam Khan, APS of former Dhaka City Corporation mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka.