Dhaka, Oct 11 (UNB) - BNP on Thursday alleged that ‘state-sponsored’ verdicts were given in the August 21 grenade attack cases, aiming to destroy BNP in a planned way.
“We’ve seen pleasure and various remarks of Awami League leaders over the verdicts. We would like to say our acting chairman Tarique Rahman was convicted through a state-sponsored judgement,” said BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi.
Speaking at a press conference at BNP’s Nayapaltan central office, he further said, “The verdict was given to ruin BNP in a planned way, and to fulfill the desire of the government’s a special person.”
The BNP leader also alleged that the verdict is also a ploy to hold a lopsided national election.
He accused that the government of ‘viciously’ using the state machinery to victimise Tarique, other BNP leaders and high officials.
On Wednesday, a speedy trial tribunal sentenced 19 people to death and 19 others, including Tarique Rahman to life imprisonment, in two cases filed over the August 21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally in the capital in 2004.
Rizvi said people have turned down the verdicts as those were given to eliminate the opposition parties.
Mentioning that ex-Chief Justice SK Sinha and a lower court judge Motahar Hossain were forced to leave for ensuring justice in the past, he said the speedy trial tribunal judge could have faced the same consequences had he given the right judgement.
The BNP leader said a condemned convict who killed Laxmipur BNP leader advocate Nurul Islam is now roaming around with presidential clemency.
As per the information they have received, Rizvi said around 6,000 dangerous prisoners have so far been released from different jails as per the directives given by the Home Ministry.
He alleged that the government controlled the ‘trial process’ as it has taken the responsibility for protecting the wicked. “As long as this government is in power, nobody will get justice.”
Dhaka, Oct 11 (UNB) – Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Thursday donated Tk 20 crore to the fund of Bangladesh Journalist Welfare Trust constituted by the present government to provide financial support to media people during their needs.
She handed over a cheque for the amount to President of Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) Mollah Jalal at a function at her official residence Ganobhaban in the city.
PM’s media adviser Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury, State Minister for Information Tarana Halim, Information Secretary Abdul Malek, Director General of the Press Institute of Bangladesh (PIB) and Managing Director of the Journalist Welfare Trust Md Shah Alamgir, former BFUJ president Abul Kalam Azad, Principal Information Officer (PIO) Kamrun Nahar, BFUJ secretary general Saban Mahmud, president of Dhaka Union of Journalists Abu Jafor Surja and general secretary Sohel Haider Chowdhury were present.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina initiated the trust fund in 2014 by giving seed money of Tk five crore which later got more money from a number of private media houses raising the total to Tk 15 crore over the last four years.
Dhaka, Oct 10 (UNB) – Awami League general secretary Obaidul Quader on Wednesday said their party is not fully satisfied with the verdict of the August-21 grenade attack cases as the mastermind of the incident and BNP’s acting chairman Tarique Rahman was not given death sentence.
“Though delayed, we aren’t unhappy with the verdict. We aren’t fully satisfied as the planner and mastermind (Tarique Rahman) of the grenade attack was not given the capital punishment,” he said.
The ruling party leader came up with the remarks while talking to reporters at Bangabandhu International Conference Center here after the pronouncement of the verdict of 21-August grenade attack cases.
Quader, also the Road Transport and Bridges Minister, said the prime target of the brutal attack was Bangabandhu’s daughter Sheikh Hasina, the then opposition leader and the current Prime Minister.
“The country’s people know it very well who was the planner and mastermind of the carnage. It’s now true as the daylight,” he added.
During the Khaleda Zia-led government, the minister said Hawa Bhaban was an alternative ‘powerhouse’.
He said executed militant leader Mufti Hannan made a confessional statement that Torque Rahman’s permission had been taken before launching the attack.
Recalling the killing of 24 people in the attack, Quader said the then government was not at all concerned over the brutal carnage as it destroyed all the evidence of the cases. The FBI was not allowed to investigate the incident while Scotland Yard was prevented from coming to Bangladesh.”
He said the then government also tried to divert the cases into a different direction by making a cooked-up story of Joj Mia.
Earlier in the morning, a speedy trial tribunal sentenced 19 people to death and 19 others, including BNP acting Chairman Tarique Rahman to life imprisonment, in two cases filed over the August 21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally in the capital in 2004.
Dhaka, Oct 10 (UNB) –Terming the verdicts in the two August 21 grenade attack cases fair, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Wednesday said justice has been done in the verdicts.
“We’re happy with the judgment. It has been proved through the verdicts that those who will commit misdeeds in the country will be punished,” said the minister in his instant reaction at the secretariat after the announcement of the verdicts in the cases.
“The whole nation has heaved a sigh of relief following the verdicts. The nation has been freed from stigma through the trial of the August 15 murder cases,” he said marking the day as red letter day.
He said the process to bring back the absconding convicts, now staying abroad, will start soon.
Dhaka, Oct 10 (UNB) - Law Minister Anisul Huq on Wednesday said BNP acting chairman Tarique Rahman should have been awarded death penalty as he is the mastermind of August 21 grenade attack incident.
“We’re happy with the verdicts, but the mastermind of the incident was Tarique Rahman…he should’ve been awarded death sentence,” he said.
The minister came up with the remarks while talking to reporters at the secretariat after the pronouncement of verdicts in the two cases.
He, however, said the government will decide whether it will file any petition with the High Court seeking death sentence for Tarique Rahman, Harris Chowdhury and Kazi Shah Mofazzal Hossain Kaikobad once the full text of the verdict is available.
Anisul said he came to know that 49 people, out of 52 accused, were sentenced to different jail terms, while 19 death sentence and 19 life-term imprisonment.
“We’ll try to bring back all those convicted in the cases but staying abroad as we’re also trying to bring back the convicts of Bangabandhu murder case,” Anisul added.
Earlier in the morning, a speedy trial tribunal sentenced 19 people, including former State Minister for Home Lutfozzaman Babar and former Deputy Minister for Education Abdus Salam Pintu, to death while 19 others, including BNP acting Chairman Tarique Rahman, to life-term imprisonment in two cases filed over the August 21 grenade attack on an Awami League rally in the capital in 2004.