Indictment hearing against Khaleda Mar 22...

Dhaka, Friday   26 February 2021

Coal Mine graft case

Indictment hearing against Khaleda Mar 22

 Staff Correspondent

 Published: 12:36 PM, 22 February 2021  

BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia; File Photo

BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia; File Photo

The court today has fixed March 22 for the indictment hearing against BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia, 11 others in the Barapukuria Coal Mine graft case.

Judge AHM Ruhul Imran of the temporary Dhaka Special Judge’s Court-2 set up in the newly constructed building No. 2 at Keraniganj Jail set the new date on Monday.

The case was scheduled to be heard on the same day. But Khaleda Zia could not appear in court as she was not physically healthy. For this, her lawyer appealed for time on behalf of the accused. After the hearing, the judge granted the petition and fixed the new date.

There were 13 accused in this case. As Jamaat-e-Islami leader Nizami and Mujahid were executed, there are currently 11 accused. Another accused Barrister Aminul Haque has recently died.

Apart from Khaleda Zia, the other accused in the case are former finance minister M Saifur Rahman (deceased), former local government, rural development and cooperatives minister Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan (deceased), Dr Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain, MK Anwar (deceased), M Shamsul Islam (deceased), Altaf Hossain Chowdhury, Barrister Aminul Haque, AKM Mosharraf Hossain, Former Acting Secretary to the Ministry of Energy Nazrul Islam, Former Chairman of Petrobangla SR Osmani, Former director Moinul Ahsan, former managing director of Barapukuria Coal Mining Company Mohammad Sirajul Islam and Moazzem Hossain, chairman of Hosaf Group, a local agent of the mining company.

On February 26, 2008, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) filed the graft case against Khaleda Zia and 15 others with Shahbagh Police Station. 

They were accused of causing a loss of Tk 158.71 crore to the state exchequer by awarding a contract for the operation of Barapukuria Coalmine to a Chinese company through abuse of power.

Ten years later, in February 2018, Khaleda Zia was sentenced to five years in prison, however, the High Court increased the sentence to ten years imprisonment later.