The prosecution yesterday told a Dhaka court that Tarique Rahman, acting chairman of BNP, was the chief architect of the August 21 grenade attack that killed 24 people including Ivy Rahman, former president of Bangladesh Mahila Awami League and wife of late President Zillur Rahman.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, also the chief of Awami League narrowly escaped the attack with an ear injury.
Two cases -- one for murder and another under the Explosive Substances Act -- were filed against 49 people with Motijheel Police Station.
In March 2012, the tribunal framed charges against the accused in the two cases.
At yesterday's hearing, Mosharraf Hossain, one of the public prosecutors (PP) of the cases, told the court that Tarique had instigated the deadly grenade attack on an AL rally at Bangabandhu Avenue in 2004 from behind the scene.
Mosharraf said this while placing his arguments before the Speedy Trial Tribunal-1 of Dhaka.
The court of Judge Shahed Nuruddin fixed today for the hearing's resumption, as Mosharraf was unable to complete placing the arguments.
During yesterday's arguments, PP Mosharraf told the court that Tarique was a powerful BNP leader who had provided all kinds of “administrative assistance to the perpetrators for committing such heinous offences without hindrance”.
The grenade attack was carried out to kill top AL leaders including Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in order to cling to state power forever, Mosharraf added.
The prosecution has thus “completely proved the charges of the criminal conspiracy beyond any doubt” against all the accused, including Tarique, and the evidence and documents were enough to punish them in the cases, the prosecutor argued.
Earlier, both the prosecution and the defence had taken 115 working days to complete the arguments of the cases, from which the prosecution took 26 days while the defence took 89.
The court recorded statements of 225 prosecution witnesses, including the complainant of the case and 20 defence witnesses.
Of the 49 accused, eight, including three former inspector generals of police, are now on bail; 18, including BNP Senior Vice Chairman [currently acting chief] Tarique, are on the run; and 23, including former BNP ministers Lutfozzaman Babar and Abdus Salam Pintu, are in jail.