DHAKA: The High Court is set to hear BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia's bail appeal at 2:00 pm today (Feb 23) in the Zia Charitable Trust corruption case in which she is facing seven years of imprisonment.
A division bench comprising Justice Obaidul Hassan and Justice AKM Zahirul Huq fixed the scheduled to hear the bail petition this morning.
Security measures have been intensified at the entrance to the court with law enforcers checking the identity cards of everyone entering the court premises.
On Tuesday (Feb 18), Khaleda Zia's lawyer panel member Advocate Sagir Hossain Leon filed the petition citing her illness.
Later on Wednesday (Feb 19) Khaleda’s counsel Khandaker Mahbub Hossain placed the petition before the court. Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) lawyer Khurshid Alam was present there.
Earlier her bail petitions in the case were turned down three times– July 31, September 3 and December 12 in 2019.
On November 18 in 2018, the BNP chief has filed an appeal with the concerned branch of the High Court challenging the lower court verdict that sentenced her seven years imprisonment in Zia Charitable Trust graft case.
On October 29 in 2018, Judge Md Akhtaruzzaman of Dhaka Special Judge Court--5 sentenced BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and 3 others to 7 years jail each, in much-hyped Zia Charitable Trust graft case.
Moreover, all the four convicts have been fined Tk10 lakh each. They have to serve more 6 months in jail each, in case of defying the fine.
Three other convicts are—Khaleda Zia’s former political affairs secretary Harris Chowdhury, his former aide and former BIWTA acting director Ziaul Islam Munna, and former Dhaka city corporation mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka’s personal secretary Monirul Islam Khan.
The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) filed the graft case against Khaleda Zia and three others with Tejgaon Police Station on August 8, 2010 for embezzling Tk3.15 crore from Zia Charitable Trust.
On February 8 in 2018, a Dhaka court sentenced Khaleda Zia to five years imprisonment in Zia Orphanage Trust case.
She was sent to Dhaka central jail following the verdict. Since then, she has been in jail.
BDST: 1235 HRS, FEB 23, 2020