Hasina claims innocence in Niko case
Detained Awami League (AL) President Sheikh Hasina yesterday said she did not cause any loss to the state by awarding a gas deal to Canadian gas exploration company Niko.
Through her lawyer the former premier said she did not abuse power in awarding the deal, and claimed that the deal rather benefited the country.
Hasina said foreign investment might stop if the government files such "false" cases against foreign companies like Niko.
Hasina's lawyer Advocate Qamrul Islam conveyed her reaction to reporters after meeting her in the special jail at the parliament building complex, where she is incarcerated.
Hasina's legal aides Qamrul and Barrister Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh entered the sub-jail at 3:40pm and came out at 5:00pm.
The lawyers said Hasina denied providing any special privilege to Niko while awarding the deal.
"We awarded the deal to Niko to explore gas in a field declared abandoned by the then Burma Eastern in 1959," Hasina said, adding, "As Niko proposed to explore gas in that abandoned gas field using modern technology, we awarded the deal to Niko."
The AL chief said she will get justice if the law takes its own course.
On December 11, the Anti-corruption Commission (ACC) sued former prime ministers Sheikh Hasina and Khaleda Zia separately along with 9 others for inflicting an enormous loss to the state by awarding gas deals to Niko through abuse of power.
The ACC will sit today to appoint an investigation officer for both the cases.
Earlier, the ACC mulled appointing its deputy directors SM Sabbir Hasan, who also filed a case against Hasina, and Shariar Chowdhury as the investigators of the cases. But Sabbir was transferred to Khulna recently while Shariar fell sick.