Haji Salim finally lands in jail
Lawmaker Haji Md Salim was sent to jail yesterday after he surrendered before the trial court in a corruption case in which he was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment in 2008.
Judge Md Shahidul Islam of Dhaka's Special Judge's Court-7 passed the order after Salim appeared before the court following High Court directives, said court sources.
The court also refused to grant Haji Salim's bail as he is now a convict.
It, however, directed authorities concerned to provide Haji Salim with the first-class division and better treatment in jail, following two separate petitions submitted by the defence.
Hundreds of the Dhaka-7 lawmaker's followers gathered at the court premises yesterday when he reached around 3:15pm amid tight security. Additional police forces were deployed to avoid any untoward incident.
On February 10 this year, the HC released the full text of a verdict directing Salim to surrender to the trial court in 30 days in connection with the case.
The HC on March 9 last year upheld a lower court's verdict where he was sentenced to 10 years' imprisonment in a corruption case filed by the Anti-Corruption Commission during the 2007 military-backed caretaker government.
It also upheld a fine of Tk 10 lakh imposed on Salim for amassing wealth worth Tk 14.65 crore beyond the known sources of his income.
The HC, however, scrapped another part of the lower court's judgement delivered in 2008, which handed three years' imprisonment to Salim for concealing information about his wealth to the ACC.
Delivering the verdict following an appeal by Salim, the HC also said his illegal wealth worth Tk 27 crore would remain confiscated.
The HC bench, however, abated another appeal filed by Salim's wife Gulshan Ara Begum challenging the trial court judgment that had sentenced her to three years' imprisonment in the same case.
Gulshan died in November 2020.
On April 27, 2008, Dhaka's Special Judge's Court-7 convicted Haji Salim and sentenced him to 13 years' imprisonment over two separate charges brought in the corruption case.
The court also sentenced his wife for abetting her husband's crime and keeping the ill-gotten wealth in her possession.
She was also fined Tk 1 lakh, in default of which she would have to spend six more months in prison.
The court also fined Salim Tk 10 lakh, in default of which he would have to stay another year in jail.
Besides, the judge issued orders for confiscating all his illegal assets worth Tk 27 crore.
Salim and his wife were tried in absentia.
They filed two separate appeals with the HC on October 25, 2009, against the trial court verdict. Following his appeal, the HC on January 2, 2011, acquitted Salim of the corruption case.
The ACC then appealed against the HC verdict to the Appellate Division.
The Appellate Division on January 12, 2015, scrapped the HC verdict and directed the HC to hold a rehearing of Salim's appeal and to dispose of the appeal again.