A Dhaka court has postponed the hearing of 11 cases of sedition and inciting violence against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, reports bdnews24.com.
“She has suddenly fallen ill, so we have petitioned for more time,” Khaleda Zia’s representative Advocate Sanaullah Miah told the bdnews24.com on Tuesday.
Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge Kamrul Hossain Mollah granted the petition, postponing the hearings to Mar 28.
Of the 11 cases, eight cases of inciting violence were filed at Dhaka’s Darus Salam Police Station, two were filed at the Jatrabari police. The sedition case was filed by Awami League Working Committee member and Supreme Court Advocate Momtaz Uddin Ahmed at the Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Court.
Currently all the cases are under the jurisdiction of the court of Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge Kamrul Hossain Mollah.
The court was to hear the chargesheet in one of the Jatrabari cases on Tuesday. The chargesheets for the remaining 10 cases are currently being formed.
‘If no other problems arise’, the BNP Chairperson would appear before the court on Tuesday for the hearings, Sanaullah Miah had told the bdnews24.com on Monday.
Speaking at a discussion on Dec 21 last year, Khaleda expressed doubts about the government's claims that nearly three million people had died during the 1971 Liberation War.
“There is a debate about how many hundreds of thousands were martyred in the Liberation War. Different books give different accounts,” she said.
The BNP chief had also said that Bangabandhu wanted to be the prime minister of undivided Pakistan rather than lead the country to independence.
Awami League and Supreme Court lawyer Momtaz Uddin Ahmed Mehedi sued the former prime minister for her remarks by bringing charges of sedition.
8 cases of inciting violence
After the BNP was prevented from holding a rally on Jan 5 2015 to protest the anniversary of the 10th Bangladesh Parliamentary Elections, Khaleda Zia called a nationwide blockade.
In the course of the blockade that lasted 90 days, vehicles and buildings were fire-bombed, leading to almost 150 deaths.
Numerous cases of inciting violence were filed at the time. Nine cases accusing Khaleda Zia were filed at the Darus Salam police station, eight under the Special Powers Act.
The court granted Khaleda bail in the cases. The cases under the Special Powers Act are awaiting an indictment hearing at the moment.
Jatrabari firebombing case
A petrol bomb explosion in Jatrabari’s Kather Pool area during 2015’s blockades led to the injury of 30 bus passengers. One of the victims, Noor Alam, later died of burns.
Jatrabari police filed two cases, where Khaleda has been accused of inciting the attack.
Police pressed charges on the former prime minister and 37 others in the cases, one for the death and the other under the Explosives Act.