Former Justice AHM Shamsuddin Chowdhury Manik filed the petition on Sunday
The High Court has rejected a writ petition seeking cancellation of the candidacy of Tabith Awal, the BNP mayoral candidate in the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) elections slated for February 1.
The bench of Justice JBM Hassan and Justice Md Khairul Alam issued the order on Monday after a two hour long hearing on the petition filed by former Justice AHM Shamsuddin Chowdhury Manik.
Advocate Kumrul Haque Siddiqui stood for the petitioner, while Barrister Rokonuddin Mahmud represented Tabith.
Justice Shamsuddin had said that Tabith concealed information about his business in Singapore in his affidavit submitted to the Election Commission.
The court on Monday said the petition’s annexed documents regarding Tabith's business in Singapore were not attested by appropriate authorities. The election is just four days away and the commission does not have the time to investigate and find out whether the BNP candidate in fact concealed the information about his wealth in Singapore.
Any rival candidate can file a complaint with the Election Commission on this issue after the election, added the court.
However, Justice Shamsuddin told reporters that he would appeal the court’s order at the Appellate Division on Tuesday.
He filed the petition on Sunday, two days after he served a legal notice to the Election Commission on the matter.
In the notice, he accused Tabith of concealing wealth information, and violating electoral laws in his affidavit submitted to the DNCC returning officer.
Tabith Awal is one of three shareholders of Singapore based NFM Energy PTE LTD, which he did not mention in his affidavit, and that’s why his nomination must be cancelled, said the former justice.
He also said that Tabith did not deny the matter when he was asked about it by journalists.
According to media reports, Tabith owns the Singapore based company with his two brothers Tafsir Awal and Tajwar Awal.
The company holds significant stakes in Bangladesh Petrochemical Company Limited (BPCL), of which Tajwar is a director as a representative of NFM Energy, say the reports.
BPCL is not included in the list of 37 companies that Tabith disclosed to the Election Commission as his business interests.
Tabith is the son of senior BNP leader Abdul Awal Mintoo. The family was named in the Paradise Papers, leaked documents that showed how wealthy families secretly invested in offshore tax havens.