General

Sheikh Hasina’s convoy attack: Ex-BNP MP, 2 others get 10-yr imprisonment

A Satkhira court on Thursday sentenced former BNP MP Habibul Islam Habib and two others to 10 years’ imprisonment in a case filed over the 2002 attack on Awami League chief Sheikh Hasina’s convoy in Kolaroa.

Satkhira Chief Judicial Magistrate Humayun Kabir delivered the verdict when 34 accused out of 50 were present in the dock.

Two other convicts of the case who were sentenced to 10-year jail are Arif Hossain and Manirul Islam. The court also sentenced 47 others to different jail terms in the case.

On January 27, the court fixed February 4 for delivering its judgment in the case after closing the law-point arguments of the case.

The court also sent the 34 accused, including former MP Habib, to jail after rejecting their bail petitions on that day. The 34 accused in the case were produced before the court amid tight security around 10 am.

Additional Attorney General SM Munur, who was present on behalf of the state, expressed satisfaction over the verdict. Besides, advocate Abdul Majid, a defence lawyer, said they will file an appeal petition against the verdict.

The accused also include Kalaroa’s former mayor Akhtarul Islam, Satkhira Bar Association’s former general secretary advocate Abdus Sattar, advocate of Supreme Court Abdus Samad, three former UP chairmen Ashraf Hossain, Rakibul Islam and Rabiul Islam and other activists of BNP.

Tiger Khokon, one of the 50 accused, is serving jail term in another case. Sixteen others accused of the case, including former councillor Abdul Kader Bacchu, are absconding.

On August 30, 2002, Prime Minister Hasina, the then opposition chief, was returning to Magura after visiting a freedom fighter’s wife in Satkhira when her convoy came under attack in Kalaroa upazila of the district.

Hasina survived the attack relatively unscathed but many Awami League leaders and workers were injured along with some journalists.

Kalaroa Mohammad Moslem Uddin, freedom fighter, filed a case against 27 men for the attack which was later dismissed for not being recorded at the police station.

The case was reopened on October 15, 2014 and police pressed charges in court against 50 accused in this connection.

On May 17, 2015, inspector Sheikh Shafiqur Islam, also the investigation officer of the case, submitted chargesheet against 50 people in the case.