Interest charge

Charges framing hearing postponed again to May 24

A court in Dhaka on Tuesday set May 24 for a hearing on the filing of charges in Niko’s corruption case filed against BNP Chairman Khaleda Zia and 10 others.

Dhaka-9 Special Court Judge Sheikh Hafizur Rahman set the new date following a time motion filed by Khaleda’s lawyer.

The petition was filed because Khaleda Zia could not appear in court due to her illness, said Helal Uddin, a lawyer for Khaleda Zia.

Earlier on March 8, the court adjourned the hearing on the formulation of charges in the case to April 12 (today).

On December 9, 2007, the Anti-Corruption Commission filed a complaint accusing Khaleda and four others of causing a loss of Tk 137.77 billion to the state by signing an oil and gas exploration agreement with the company Canadian Niko on behalf of the state which was deemed not to place the national interest of Bangladesh above all other considerations, and influenced by corruption.

The anti-corruption body filed a complaint in court against 11 people, including Khaleda, in May 2008.

Other defendants in the case are BNP Standing Committee member Moudud Ahmed, former Minister of State AKM Mosharraf Hossain, former Principal Secretary Kamal Uddin Siddique, Khandaker Shahidul Islam, CM Yusuf Hossain, l former general manager of Bapex Mir Mainul Haq, its former secretary Shafiur Rahman, Giasuddin Al Mamun, former parliamentarian MAH Selim and former vice president for South Asian affairs Niko Kashem Sharif.