SC scraps HC stay on Khaleda’s Niko graft case

DHAKA, March 23, 2017 (BSS) - The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court today scrapped a High Court order, staying the proceedings of Niko graft case against BNP Chairperson and former Prime Minister Begum Khaleda Zia.

A three-member apex court bench headed by Chief Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha, also disposed of a rule issued by the High Court asking as to why it shall not declare illegal the case proceedings against the BNP chief.

"After today's order, there is no legal bar in continuing the proceedings of the case at the trial court," said Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) counsel advocate Khurshid Alam Khan.

The ACC filed the case against five, including Khaleda, with Tejgaon police station on December 9, 2007 on the charge of abusing power to pen a deal with Canadian company Niko for exploring and extracting gas.

The ACC on May 5, 2008, submitted charge-sheet against 11 people including Khaleda Zia.

Accepting a petition filed by Khaleda, the HC on July 9, 2008, stayed the case proceedings and issued the rule.

The High Court on June 18, 2015, passed an order, paving the way for continuing the graft case against the BNP leader before the trial court. The court had also asked the BNP chief to surrender before the concerned trial court within two months.

But following a fresh petition of Khaleda Zia, the High Court on March 7, 2017, again stayed the proceedings of the case.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)