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Testimony in Hasina trial remains on hold PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 03 July 2008


A Dhaka court Tuesday postponed further witness testimony in the barge-mounted power plant case, against former prime minister Sheikh Hasina and others, to July 10.

Judge Feroz Alam presided over a short hearing, that began around 10.30am at the Special Judge's Court-1, before adjourning further proceedings following a request by defence counsels.

Hasina's lawyers submitted to the court that the case documents had not yet arrived back from the High Court, which had requested them for a hearing of a petition by the former prime minister to scrap the case against her.

Hasina petitioned the higher court on June 2 to cancel the case. She also sought a halt on the case proceedings and bail until the High Court gave a ruling on the petition.

The special judge's court had already previously suspended witness depositions in the case to July 1, as the High Court was on vacation from June 19. The trial court could not proceed without the case documents.

Advocate Sahara Khatun appeared in court Tuesday on behalf of Hasina, who is seeking medical treatment overseas. Former power secretary Toufique-e-Elahi Chowdhury, another accused in the case, was present at the hearing.

The Anticorruption Commission filed the case on Sept 2 last year against eight people, including Sheikh Hasina, accusing them of taking bribes of Tk 3 crore in exchange for awarding contracts to set up three barge-mounted power plants during the 1996-2001 Awami League term in office.

Charges were framed against all accused on May 18 and depositions began on May 21.

Six witnesses have testified in the trial so far.

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