Aug 21 grenade attack case
Charge framing against Tarique now Mar 18Bdnews24.com . Dhaka
A special tribunal in Dhaka on Monday deferred until March 18 the hearing of framing charges against the BNP senior vice-chairman, Tarique Rahman, and other new accused in twin cases filed over the August 21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally in 2004.
Judge Mohammad Shahed Nur Uddin of the Speedy Trial Tribunal-1 re-fixed the date of the hearing, saying that preparation to indict the accused was inadequate.
Abdul Kahar Akand, special police superintendent of the Criminal Investigation Department, submitted supplementary charge-sheets in the cases on July 3 last year accusing the BNP chief Khaleda Zia’s elder son Tarique, her former political secretary Harris Chowdhury, Jamaat-e-Islami leader Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed and 27 others of complicity in the attack.
At present, the total number of accused is 52, including the previous 22.
The newly accused include the former state minister for home during the BNP-led 2001-6 cabinet Lutfozzaman Babar, Khaleda’s nephew Saiful Islam Duke and BNP MP Shah Mofazzal Hossain Kaikobad.
The hearing had begun on the discharge plea on September 11 last year.
Nineteen of the 52 charge-sheeted accused in the August 21 grenade attack cases are now staying abroad. The two cases were filed under the explosives and murder acts.
A total of 24 people, including wife of former Awami League general secretary and incumbent president Zillur Rahman and party’s then secretary for women’s affairs Ivy Rahman, had died and over 100 AL leaders and activists were severely injured in the attack carried out in front of the ruling party’s central office on Bangabandhu Avenue.
The prime minister, Sheikh Hasina, then the opposition leader, had narrowly survived the attack, one of the deadliest in Bangladesh’s history.
Allegation of diverting the probe attention was raised during the BNP-Jamaat-led four-party coalition government. During the last military-backed caretaker government, CID official Fazlul Kabir submitted two charge sheets on June 11, 2008 accusing 22 people of being involved with the attack.
The court on August 3, 2009 gave orders for further probe into the case following petition from the state lawyers.
CID special police superintendent Abdul Kahar Akand was assigned to the further probe.
On July 30, he submitted the supplementary charge sheets accusing 30 more.
Banned Islamist outfit Harkatul Jihad al-Islami chief Mufti Abdul Hannan and former deputy minister Abdus Salam Pintu of the BNP were among the formerly accused.
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