A Dhaka court adjourned until May 2 the hearing of Boropukuria coalmine graft case as BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia was not produced before it today due to her illness.
Senior Jail Superintendent Iqbal Kabir informed the court Khaleda is now undergoing treatment at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) in the capital.
Iqbal Kabir on Monday asked the BSMMU authorities whether Khaleda would be produced before the court today. But BSMMU Additional Director Nazmul Karim replied negative.
As the BNP chief was not produced, Judge ASM Ruhul Imran of the Special Judge Court-2 of Dhaka adjourned the charge framing hearing of the case filed against Khaleda and eight others.
Moreover, another accused Barrister Aminul Haque, is now on life-support in United Hospital.
Seven other accused, who are now out on bail, were present at the makeshift court set up at Alia Madrasa in Bakshibazar.
Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) Public Prosecutor Mosharraf Hossain Kajol told the court that the jail authorities wrote on the custody warrant placed before the court saying Khaleda was sick and she was admitted to BMSSU for treatment.
The court on February 26 directed the jail authorities to produce the former prime minister before it on March 13 for charge framing hearing. The judge passed the order following a petition submitted by the ACC public prosecutor.
Earlier on October 5 of 2008, the ACC pressed charges against Khaleda and 15 others in the Barapukuria coalmine corruption case.
Seven persons including former finance minister Saifur Rahman were dropped from charge sheet after their death.
On February 26, 2008, the ACC filed the case with Shahbagh Police Station accusing 16 people including Khaleda and ten of her former cabinet colleagues of taking Tk 159 crore in kickbacks on the Barapukuria coalmine deal awarded to the highest bidder.