The Supreme Court has directed the government to immediately release Azmat Ali, a former school teacher from Pakhimara village under Sharishabari upazila of Jamalpur, from jail as he was arrested in 2009 even after the president pardoned him in 1991.
The apex court also observed that the decision of sending Azmat Ali to jail even after getting the order of release from jail custody in view of the remission of his sentence granted by the president under the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) was “unjustified and unfortunate”.
The Appellate Division of the SC came up with the order and observation in a full text of its judgement which was released yesterday.
A six-member bench of the Appellate Division, headed by Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain, passed the short order on June 27 on a review petition filed by Azmat Ali with support from the Supreme Court Legal Aid Committee.
The review petition was filed with the SC against its verdict on August 11, 2010 that had scrapped a High Court judgement acquitting Azmat from the charge of the case filed for killing one Rezaul Karim in 1987.
In the review petition, Azmat informed the apex court of the president’s order that granted him mercy and prayed for his release, Supreme Court Legal Aid Committee sources said.
In the full text of judgement, the SC said the petitioner Azmat Ali, son of Tazzat Ullah Sardar of Pakhimara village under Sharishabari Upazila, was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment by the sessions judge’s court of Jamalpur on March 9, 1989 in connection with the case.
Following an appeal filed by Azmat Ali, the HC on March 2, 2005 acquitted him of the charges.
The state filed an appeal with the SC in 2008 challenging the HC verdict and after hearing the state’s appeal, the Appellate Division on February 20, 2008 scrapped the HC judgement and order.
Earlier on August 21, 1996, Azmat was released from jail in view of the remission of sentence granted by the president on January 14, 1991.
But after delivery of the Appellate Division’s judgement, Azmat was again arrested on October 20, 2009 and since then he has been in jail, the SC said in the full text of verdict.
SC yesterday sent the full text of the verdict to the trial court concerned and Jamalpur district jail for taking necessary steps to release Azmat.
Supreme Court Bar Association President Advocate AM Aminuddin, who appeared for Azmat, told The Daily Star that the president’s order granting mercy was informed to the SC through filing the review petition. The police had arrested Azmat as they were not aware of the president’s order, he added.