The Special Judge Court-3 of Dhaka yesterday (Thursday) fixed December 10 for next Hearing in the Zia Orphanage Trust and Zia Charitable Trust graft cases filed against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and eight others.Judge Abu Ahmed Jomadar of the court, set up on Alia Madrasa premises of Bakshibazar area in the city fixed the date after the day’s hearing on Thursday.
Khaleda Zia did not appear to the court in yesterday’s hearing of Zia Charitable Trust graft case due to her illness. Advocates Sanaullah Mia, Joynal Abedin Mesba and Taherul Islam Touhid appeared to the court on her behalf.
On the day, the defence counsels cross-examined four witnesses and recorded depositions of Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) Assistant Director Nazmul Ahsan in the Zia Charitable Trust graft case. The BNP chiefs lawyers and other defence lawyers cross-examined Social Islami Bank Senior Officer Ziauddin Khan, Duthch Bangla Bank Senior Officer Kamruzzaman, ACC Constables Monzurul Haque and Shirauddin.
On the next date, the defence lawyers are supposed to cross-examine the witnesses while more witnesses would testify on the next date.
On Thursday, Khaleda Zia’s counsel Sanaullah Mia filed a petition seeking exemption of personal appearance to the court as she was still unwell. Accepting the petition, the court decided to continue the trial proceedings.
Besides, the court kept the hearing of Zia Orphanage Trust graft case adjourned as an application of the defence seeking ‘leave to appeal’ is yet to be disposed of at the High Court Divion.
The Anti Corruption Commission filed Zia Orphanage Trust graft case on July 3, 2008 with Ramna Model Police Station accusing Khaleda Zia, her son Tarique Rahman and four others of misappropriating over Tk 2.10 crore, which came as grants from a foreign bank for orphans.
They are- are former BNP lawmaker Kazi Saleemul Haque, businessman Sharfuddin Ahmed, Khaleda Zia’s former Principal Secretary Dr Kamal Uddin Siddiqui and Momenur Rahman.
Meanwhile, on August 8, 2011, the ACC filed the Zia Charitable Trust graft case with Tejgaon Police Station accusing four people, including Khaleda Zia, of abusing power in raising funds for the trust from unknown sources.
The other accused in the case are Harris Chowdhury, Ziaul Islam Munna, Assistant Private Secretary (APS) to Harris, and Monirul Islam Khan APS to Sadeque Hossain Khoka, mayor of the erstwhile Dhaka City Corporation.