A Dhaka court yesterday asked lawyers to produce former prime minister Khaleda Zia before it on September 27 in connection with a case filed for not submitting service returns of Daily Dinkal Publications Limited for years.
Metropolitan Magistrate AJM Abdullahel Baqui passed the order after Khaleda's lawyers submitted a petition seeking time for her, who could not appear before the court yesterday due to security reason.
According to her lawyers, the government was not informed to take necessary steps to ensure Khaleda's security.
The former prime minister was also not allowed earlier to distribute relief among the flood-hit people considering her security, they added.
Abdul Mannan, deputy registrar (current charge) of the Registrar of Joint Stock Companies and Firms (RJSCF), filed the case on June 12 against Khaleda, her son Tarique
and nine other directors of the newspaper.
The case was filed with the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's Court under section 36(5) of the Companies Act 1994.
The nine other accused are Tarique's business partner Giasuddin Al Mamun, Sheikh Razzak Ali, barrister Nazmul Huda, Maj (retd) MA Mannan, Manjurul Ahsan Munshi, Fazlul Azim, Ali Asgar Lobi, Rokonuddin Molla and AKM Mosharraf Hossain.
According to the complaint, the accused were directors of Daily Dinkal Publications Limited, registered with the RJSCF, and they did not submit service return for several years.
Earlier, the court had issued summons asking them to appear before it in person on July 16 and yesterday.
Meanwhile, defence lawyers of four accused-- Razzak, Mannan, Fazlul Azim and Rokonuddin-- yesterday filed time petitions for adjournment of the hearing saying they had earlier submitted two petitions to the High Court seeking cancellation of declaration of Dinkal Publications Limited, hearing on which is scheduled to be held today.
After the hearing, the magistrate granted the petitions and set the date for next hearing of the case.
According to the Joint Stock Companies and Firms Act, it is mandatory to submit annual returns, schedule of annual general meetings, audit reports, director reports and other documents.
But the accused did not submit those for years, alleged the plaintiff.
Of the accused, Tarique, Mamun, Huda, Manjurul, Lobi and Mosharraf were arrested earlier and they are now in different jails.
The two other accused -- barristers Nurul Amin Talukder and Abdus Salam Talukder-- are dead.