Khaleda Zia might be taken to Dhaka Old jail today | Daily Star
10:59 AM, November 08, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 02:43 PM, November 08, 2018

Freed from BSMMU, Khaleda taken to court in Niko graft case

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia was taken to old central jail directly from Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) and produced before a special court there in Niko graft case.

She was admitted to the hospital on October 6 following a High Court order.

Khaleda was released from the BSMMU after the medical board formed for her treatment gave her discharge certificate, the hospital’s Director Brig Gen Abdullah Al Harun told The Daily Star.

A black SUV of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) carrying Khaleda reached the old central jail in the capital's Nazimuddin Road around 11:40am, our correspondent reports from the spot.

Sources inside old central jail at Nazumuddin Road told The Daily Star that she was produced before a makeshift court inside the jail for hearing of Niko graft case around 11:45am. The court later adjourned the hearing in the case till November 14.

Security measures in and around the hospital was beefed up in the morning centering the release of Khaleda.

What are the allegations in Niko graft case?

On December 9, 2007, the Anti-Corruption Commission filed the Niko graft case with Tejgaon Police Station accusing Khaleda and 10 others of abusing power to award a gas exploration and extraction deal to Canadian company Niko during her tenure as the prime minister.

Why the court was set up inside old central jail?

On November 7, the law ministry issued a gazette notification ensuring the trial of Khaleda and others accused in the Niko corruption case to be held at a makeshift court in Old Dhaka central jail.

The ministry issued the gazette notification transferring the court citing security reasons.

Why Khaleda is in jail?

Khaleda landed in the old central jail on February 8 after a special court sentenced her to five years' rigorous imprisonment in Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case.

The High Court on October 30 enhanced the punishment of BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia to 10 years imprisonment in the case.

Besides, BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia was also convicted in Zia Charitable Trust corruption case and sentenced to seven years' rigorous imprisonment by a special court on October 29.

What are the allegations against Khaleda Zia in Zia Orphanage trust graft case?

The Anti-Corruption Commission filed the graft case with Ramna Police Station in Dhaka in July 2008, accusing Khaleda and five others of misappropriating over Tk 2.1 crore that had come from a foreign bank as grants for orphans.

According to the case document, then (1991-1996) prime minister Khaleda Zia opened an account named “Prime Minister's Orphanage Trust” with the Ramna branch of Sonali Bank.

On June 9, 1991, $126,000 (Tk 4,44,81,216) was deposited in the account from United Saudi Commercial Bank, but the money was not spent for any orphanage between June 9, 1991, and September 5, 1993, it said.

When did Khaleda’s political career start?

Khaleda was made vice-chairperson of BNP in March 1983 after the assassination of her husband and former president, Ziaur Rahman. She became chairperson of the party on May 10, 1984, a post she is holding still today.

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