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Dhaka Tribune

Zainul: Khaleda Zia wants bail, not parole

He said 37 cases were filed against Khaleda only for political reasons

Update : 03 Oct 2019, 04:24 PM

Khaleda Zia’s lawyer Advocate Zainul Abedin has said that the BNP chairperson wants bail not parole.

"The BNP chairperson never wanted parole at the government's mercy. She wanted bail. It is her right and she deserves it,” he told a press briefing at the Supreme Court Bar Association in Dhaka on Wednesday.

He said 37 cases were filed against Khaleda over political reasons. “However, she will be able to come out of jail if she gets bail in the Zia Charitable Trust and Zia Orphanage Trust corruption cases.”

"She is innocent," Zainul, also a BNP vice-chairman, claimed. "The government put her in jail to detach her from the people."

He added that they will file a new bail petition soon.

Other members of Khaleda’s defence team were present at the press conference, among others.

For the past few days, senior leaders and MPs of BNP have been urging the government to let the ailing BNP chief secure bail and allow her to go abroad for medical treatment.

BNP lawmakers, after visiting Khaleda at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) Hospital, on Wednesday also urged Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to see their ailing chairperson herself and take steps for her release on bail.

Khaleda has been receiving treatment at the BSMMU since April 1.

‘Movement will free Khaleda Zia’

Meanwhile, BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir yesterday said the party was gearing up to launch a nationwide movement to free Khaleda Zia, who has been in jail since February last year.

“She will be freed either through the movement or via legal course by securing bail from the court, he said while addressing a human chain, organised by Bangladesh Sammilito Peshajibi Parishad, in front of the National Press Club.

He also said that getting bail from the court was the BNP chief’s legal right.

“They [the government] have jailed our leader so that they can carry out their plan to turn Bangladesh into a non-democratic country,” Fakhrul added.

‘Khaleda’s release a legal matter’

On the other hand, stating that Khaleda’s release was a legal matter, Information Minister Hasan Mahmud yesterday said there was no option but to follow the legal procedure.

Talking to reporters at the secretariat, he said Khaleda was jailed in several cases. “Her release is fully a legal matter and it’s under the jurisdiction of court.

“She has not been imprisoned for political reason that she could be freed through a movement.”

Khaleda, a former prime minister, has been in jail since she was convicted in the Zia Orphanage Trust corruption case in February 8, 2018. She was also found guilty in another corruption case in October.

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