AL casts 'aspersion on the judiciary'
Monday, 01 September 2008

Delwar says on AL criticism over Tarique release

Staff Correspondent

BNP secretary general Khandker Delwar Hossain has slammed Awami League's criticism over Tarique Rahman securing bail as an "aspersion on the judiciary".

Speaking at a press briefing Saturday, after a joint meeting of the party, Delwar said: "[Syed Ashraful Islam] accused Tarique Rahman of being the 'world champion' of corruption. But no truth has been found in the cases filed against him."

"If you have any specific allegation you file a case against Tarique. Don't make accusations without substantiating it with facts and figures," he said addressing his remarks to Awami League.

Delwar described the cases against Tarique as being filed "out of political vindication".

In a press briefing earlier in the day, AL's acting general secretary Syed Ashraful Islam had said: "If the 'world champion' of corruption is released from jail the present government has no moral right to keep other persons who are accused of corruption detained."

He also raised questions about the aim of the government's anticorruption drive, claiming it was launched to rescue the political position of BNP and Jamaat-e-Islami.

The BNP joint meeting, at Delwar's NAM flat residence, was held to discuss the programme for the 30th founding anniversary of the party on Sept 1.

After the meeting, Delwar told reporters the party would observe a three-day programme that includes a discussion at Mohanagar Natya Mancha on Sunday afternoon and laying of wreaths at the grave of the late president Ziaur Rahman on Monday.

Delwar said Thursday's meeting between detained former prime minister Khaleda Zia and Jamaat-e-Islami secretary general Ali Ahsan Mohammad Mojaheed was held in accordance with the jail code.

"The jail authorities allowed the visit as a former prime minister made the request," said Delwar who was also present at the time.

"No political meeting was held."

He stressed that 'unlike Sheikh Hasina', Khaleda Zia did not make any special request for release. "She will be released through the legal process."

In reply to a question, he expressed indignation at the rearrest of his son Khandker Akhter Hamid Paban after getting bail. "Law and constitution are being violated. There is no rule of law. All of us are now helpless."

BNP vice president Prof Sarwari Rahman, standing committee members Dr RA Gani, Chowdhury Tanveer Ahmed Siddiqui, and MK Anwar, joint secretaries general Selima Rahman, Nazrul Islam Khan and Prof Abdul Mannan, office secretary Rizvi Ahmed and leaders of front organisations were present at the press briefing.

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