BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday filed an appeal with the Supreme Court challenging the High Court order that rejected her bail petition in Zia Charitable Trust graft case in which she was sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment by a lower court.
In the appeal, Khaleda prayed to the apex court to grant her bail in the corruption case.
Citing the appeal, Khaleda’s lawyer Advocate Zainul Abedin told The Daily Star that the case filed against Khaleda, a former prime minister, was “politically motivated”.
There is no evidence of corruption against Khaleda Zia, he said, adding that she is 74 years old and is very ill and therefore, she is entitled to get bail in the case.
Advocate Zainul also said they will move the appeal before the SC chamber judge’s bench next week.
On July 31, the HC rejected the BNP chief’s bail petition in the Zia Charitable Trust corruption case.
Earlier on October 29 last year, a special court in Dhaka convicted Khaleda in the case and sentenced her to seven years’ imprisonment in her absence.
It also awarded the same jail term to Harris Chowdhury, political secretary to then prime minister Khaleda Zia; Harris’s assistant and personal secretary Ziaul Haq Munna; and Monirul Islam Khan, assistant personal secretary to then Dhaka mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka.
The Anti-Corruption Commission filed the case with Tejgaon Police Station on August 8, 2011.
The BNP chief landed in jail after being sentenced to five years’ imprisonment in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case by the same court on February 8.
The HC on October 30 enhanced her punishment to 10 years in the case, after dismissing her appeal.
BNP MP SEEKS PM’S CONSIDERATION
Meanwhile at yesterday’s parliament session, BNP lawmaker Harunur Rashid urged Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to take steps to release Khaleda Zia on bail, paving way for her treatment.
Taking floor on point of order, Harun said Khaleda Zia was in poor health, and needs batter treatment immediately. “Honorable leader of the house [Sheikh Hasina], please take necessary steps for her [Khaleda Zia’s] bail, considering her health condition as she had significant role in various movements,” Harun said.