Law Minister Anisul Huq today said BNP acting chairperson Tarique Rahman can be brought back to the country from the United Kingdom under the mutual legal assistance law even if “he has no Bangladeshi citizenship”.
“So far I know Tarique Rahman has surrendered his Bangladeshi passport to the Home office of the United Kingdom and he sought political asylum there. It means that he has voluntarily said that he (Tarique) does not want to remain as a citizen of Bangladesh. Therefore, he denied Bangladeshi citizenship,” the minister said.
The law minister was addressing at a press conference at the conference room of the law ministry on the occasion of observing National Legal Aid Day on April 28.
Minister Anisul Huq said Tarique Rahman, who is convicted and sentenced to seven years’ imprisonment in a money laundering case, was a citizen of Bangladesh when he committed the crime.
He (Tarique) went to the UK by submitting an undertaking, the minister said adding that the government can bring him back to the county under the mutual legal assistance act.
3 lac underprivileged people received legal aid at free of cost
A total of 3,00,598 poor, insolvent and destitute people including women and children have been served with legal aid at the government cost since 2009 to March this year, Law Minister Anisul Huq said today.
The service was provided through the National Legal Aid Services Organization (NLASO), National Legal Aid Service Helpline Call Centre--6430, Supreme Court Legal Aid Committee (SCLAC) and Legal Aid Cells under the labour courts, he said.
The law minister was speaking at the same conference mentioned that a total of 2,01,125 people including 1,03,154 women and 529 children have been provided legal aid at the government’s cost since 2009 to March 2018under the NLASO.
He further added that a total of Tk 8.35 crore has been collected peacefully through mediation for the victim litigants through NLASO.
The law minister said the government has set up legal aid cells under the labour courts in Dhaka and Chittagong to provide legal aid with the poor and underprivileged labours for establishing the legal rights.
“We will set up legal aid cells under all the labour courts across the country in phases,” he said, adding that the government has already established legal aid office in every district.
The SCLAC has given legal assistance to 3,019 poor and disadvantaged people at the government cost till March 2018 after its commencement on September 8, 2015, Minister Anisul said.
Replying to a question, the minister said the government will solve all the problems of the SCLAC including its manpower crisis gradually.
National Legal Aid Service Day will be observed on tomorrow across the country in order to make people aware of the government providing legal assistance to the poor, insolvent, and destitute justice-seekers.
The law ministry has organised a programme in Osmani Memorial Auditorium in the capital on the occasion, the law minister said, adding that talk-shows, discussions, and blood donation camps will be held across the country.
Law Secretary ASSM Zahirul Haque Dulal, among others, was present at the press conference.