A Dhaka court yesterday adjourned the hearing of trial proceedings till June 23 in Zia Charitable Trust graft case filed against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and three others.
Judge Abu Ahmed Jomadar of the Special Judge Court-3 adjourned the hearing in the presence of Khaleda after her lawyer filed a time petition.
During the hearing, Khaleda's lawyer Abdur Rezak Khan told the court that their client filed an appeal with the Supreme Court on June 1 against the High Court order that rejected his client's plea to cross-examine the investigation officer of the case. The matter is now pending. So they prayed for adjournment.
While Public Prosecutor Mosharraf Hossain Kajol opposed it saying that there was no stay order to continue trial proceedings.
Khaleda appeared before the makeshift court set up at Bakshibazar as per the court order. During the hearing, Khaleda was allowed to sit on a chair.
BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir and several other party leaders were present at the court and a large number of law enforcers were deployed in and outside the court.
On May 19, Khaleda was asked to appear before the court to place her self-defence statements against the statements of 32 prosecution witnesses given during the trial.
On April 17, Khaleda appeared before the court but sought time to submit her self-defence statements. She was absent from the court on two executive dates.
On April 7, the High Court cleared the way for a lower court to continue the trial against Khaleda after rejecting her petition seeking cancellation of the proceedings.
The other accused are Harris Chowdhury, Khaleda's former political secretary, Ziaul Islam Munna, assistant private secretary (APS) of Harris, and Monirul Islam Khan, APS of former mayor Sadeque Hossain Khoka. Of them, Harris is on the run.