The court has set April 1 for the next hearing on charge framing against 11 people, including Khaleda, in the Niko graft case
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir has said that the party’s Chairperson Khaleda Zia, who is serving time in prison in two corruption cases, is so ill that she is unable to properly sit in a wheelchair.
"She is also unable to keep her head still," he told reporters on Tuesday near the old Dhaka central jail, where the Special Judge Court 9 is temporarily placed to hold hearings.
Fakhrul said: “Khaleda Zia is not getting proper checkups. She is suffering from tremendous pain in her hands and knees.”
The BNP leader was talking to reporters after the court set April 1 for the next hearing on charge framing against 11 people, including Khaleda, in the Niko graft case.
Former prime minister Khaleda was produced before the court around 12pm in a wheelchair for Tuesday’s hearing. Fakhrul was present in the courtroom till the proceedings ended at 1:20pm.
Khaleda's lawyer Masud Ahmed Talukder told the court that they were not getting necessary documents. "We did not get the copies of documents even after your (the judge's) order. We cannot prepare without those.”
The court, however, told him that the plea had been resolved, reports UNB.
Anti-Corruption Commission’s (ACC) lawyer Mosharraf Hossain Kajol rejected Masud's claim, saying they had provided documents and accused the defence of raising such allegations to impede the trial process.
On December 9, 2007, the ACC filed the case accusing Khaleda and four others of causing a loss of Tk137.77 billion to the state by signing an oil-gas exploration deal with Canadian company Niko when the BNP was in office.
The anti-graft body pressed charges in court against 11 people, including Khaleda, on May 5, 2008.
The other accused in the case are BNP Standing Committee member Moudud Ahmed, former state minister AKM Mosharraf Hossain, Kamal Uddin Siddique, Khandaker Shahidul Islam, CM Yusuf Hossain, Bapex’s former general manager Mir Mainul Haq and former secretary Shafiur Rahman, Giasuddin Al Mamun, former MP MAH Selim and former vice-president of Niko’s South-Asia affairs Kashem Sharif.