Won’t be vindictive against Hasina, reiterates Khaleda

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Dhaka, November 09: BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia on Thursday reiterated that she will not be vindictive against her arch rival Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.While giving her self-defence statement in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case before the makeshift court of Special Judge-5 at Bakshibazar, she also urged the judge of the court to ensure justice as per law in the case with his courage and honesty braving the government’s ‘influence’, reports UNB.

The BNP chief claimed that the case was filed against her as part of the constant efforts of a quarter to harass and defame her and her family as the successor of Ziaur Rahman.

Khaleda, however, said she personally forgave Sheikh Hasina though she constantly made indecent remarks about Zia and his other family members and show her hostile attitude towards them. “I won’t show any vindictive attitude towards her.”

The BNP chief said there is a perception that a verdict will be given against her as per the ruling quarter’s desire. “But I want to believe that you (Judge) will do justice with your courage and honesty as per the law rising above the government’s influence.”

She further said, “Though it’s claimed that our judiciary is completely independent, some recent incidents have been putting the credibility of the assertion into questions regularly… this case will expose whether the judges can conduct trial proceedings lawfully and independently guided by their conscience.”

Khaleda urged the judge to deliver verdict in the case based on good sense, wisdom, farsightedness, guts and integrity. “This case will be a vital element of history. It would be cleared in the days to come whether you could take the right decision guided by the law and your conscience.”

Khaleda started presenting her self-defence statement in the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case before the court on October 19.

As she could not complete her statement today, the court fixed next Thursday for further hearing on the case.

On July 3, 2008, the Anti-Corruption Commission filed the Zia Orphanage Trust graft case with Ramna Police Station accusing Khaleda Zia, her eldest son Tarique Rahman, and four others for misappropriating over Tk 21.0 million (2.10 crore) that came as grants from a foreign bank for orphans.

On August 8, 2011, the commission filed the Zia Charitable Trust graft case with Tejgaon Police Station accusing four people, including Khaleda Zia, of abuse of power in raising funds for the trust from unknown sources.