A local court in Pabna on July 3 sentenced nine BNP leaders and its affiliates to death in a case filed over the 1994 train attack – nearly 25 years after the incident took place
A total of 43 people, including the eight facing death sentences in a case filed over the 1994 attack on a train carrying the then opposition leader Sheikh Hasina, has filed an appeal to the High Court against a local court order.
Lawyer Kaiser Kamal, who stood on behalf of them, filed the appeal with the High Court bench concerned.
Among them, eight are facing the death sentence, 22 life in prison and 13 were sentenced with 10 years in prison.
A local court in Pabna on July 3 sentenced nine BNP leaders and its affiliates to death in a case filed over the 1994 train attack – nearly 25 years after the incident took place.
The court sentenced 25 other BNP leaders and activists to life in prison, and fined each of them Tk3 lakh, with an additional two years in jail for defaulting the fine payment.
Thirteen more convicts were sentenced to 10 years in prison, and charged Tk1 lakh fine each, with an additional one-year imprisonment for defaulting on the payment.
A total of 40 convicts are in jail, seven convicts are still absconding, with five having died during trial..
According to the case details, on September 23, 1994, a group of members of BNP and its affiliate organizations attacked a train carrying the entourage of then opposition leader Sheikh Hasina when it was entering Ishwardi railway junction.
Sheikh Hasina was travelling from Khulna to Syedpur through Ishwardi for party programs.
The assailants hurled crude bombs at the train and opened fire at it.
Nazrul Islam, the then OC of Ishwardi railway police, filed a case against seven people after the attack.
After the Awami League came to power in 1996, a fresh investigation on the attack was conducted, and 52 people were accused in the new report.
Police submitted the charge sheet against the accused in April 1997. However, the court did not accept the charge sheet and transferred the case to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for further investigation. The CID submitted another charge sheet before the court.
Based on the CID charges, the court on Sunday, June 30, 2019, sent 30 accused to jail by rejecting their bail. On Tuesday, two other accused, Mokhlesur Rahman Bablu and Abdul Hakim Tenu, surrendered before the court. Police arrested another accused on the same night.
Pabna Public Prosecutor Advocate Aktaruzzaman Mukta along with Advocate Golam Hasnain represented the state during the trial, while Advocate Nurul Islam and Advocate Sanath Kumar Sarker stood for the accused.