03 Dec 2023, 16:15

Indictment hearing in Barapukuria Coalmine graft case adjourned till March 24 

DHAKA, Dec 3, 2023 (BSS) - A Dhaka court today adjourned till March 24 the hearing on charge framing in the Barapukuria Coalmine graft case against BNP chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia and nine others.

Judge Md Akteruzzaman of Dhaka Special Judge Court-2 passed the order, allowing a time plea filed by Khaleda Zia's counsel.

The court on August 8, 2023, started its hearing on charge framing in the case. Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) public prosecutor Mosharraf Hossain Kazal concluded his part of hearing on that day. Counsel for accused Moinul Ahsan took part in the hearing for the acquittal of his client.

The anti-graft body on February 26, 2008, filed the graft case against Khaleda Zia and 15 others with Shahbagh Police Station. ACC deputy director Md Abul Kashem Fokir on October 5, 2008, filed a charge-sheet in the case.

They were accused of causing a loss of around Taka 159 crore to the state exchequer by awarding a contract for operation of Barapukuria Coalmine to a Chinese company through abuse of power.

Of the initial 16 accused, convicted war criminals Nizami and Mojaheed have been hanged and four others have died of natural causes and their names are expected to be dropped from the case during framing of the charges.

Now the 10 accused are- Begum Khaleda Zia, Altaf Hossain Chowdhury, Dr Khandker Mosharraf Hossain, MK Anwar, M Shamsul Islam, Md Sirajul Islam Chowdhury, Moajjem Hossain, Nazrul Islam, Moinul Ahsan, and AKM Mosharraf Hossain.