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Thu, Feb 20, 2020 6:06

Nazrul hopes Khaleda will be granted bail

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BNP standing committee member Nazrul Islam Khan said the High Court will grant bail to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia if the judiciary can work independently.

BNP standing committee member Nazrul Islam Khan said the High Court will grant bail to BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia if the judiciary can work independently.

The BNP leader came with the remarks while speaking to the media in front of the National Press Club in Dhaka on Thursday.

 “A petition has been filed to the High Court seeking bail for Khaleda in the Zia Charitable Trust graft case. She will be granted bail if the judiciary can work independently. Otherwise, we will free her in a democratic way,” Nazrul said.

The Jatiyatabadi Sramik Dal, a unit of BNP, tried to hold a human-chain demonstration in front of the National Press Club in Dhaka on Thursday demanding Khaleda Zia's release from jail.

The event was obstructed by police afterwards.

“Khaleda didn’t commit any crime,” Nazrul claimed in a statement to the media.

“Pushing Khaleda Zia towards death by keeping her in jail is an inhuman act. Not only the government, but also the nation will have to take responsibilities over the crime.”

“The law enforcers haven’t allowed us to hold a human chain demonstration outside the National Press Club due to a programme of the prime minister. They said we can’t hold any programme here as it is forbidden by the government.”

“We didn’t want to disobey the law. That’s why we have decided the programme to hold in another day.”

However, the court is set to hear Khaleda Zia's bail plea in the graft case on Feb 23.

Khaleda has been in prison since February 2018, serving a total of 17 years in jail in the Zia Orphanage and Zia Charitable Trust corruption cases.

The former prime minister was later transferred to the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University Hospital on Apr 1 last year for treatment under the supervision of jail authorities.

Khaleda is seeking bail on humanitarian grounds in light of her health and age as she is not receiving advanced medical care at BSMMUH, according to the petition.

The BNP chairperson’s legal team had previously appealed to the High Court for her bail after she was sentenced to seven years in jail in the Zia Charitable Trust corruption case.

The High Court turned down the bail appeal on Jul 31 last year, taking into account the gravity of the crime and the highest punishment for the crime.