Khaleda’s stay in jail likely to be prolonged

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    BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia

    BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia may have to stay longer than initially expected time in jail, authorities concerned gave a broad hint.

    The former prime minister is likely to be shown arrested in four more cases in which arrest warrants were issued, apart from her jailing for five years in a graft case last week.

    Now kept in Nazimuddin Road jail in the city following her five-year imprisonment in Zia Orphanage Trust case, Khaleda Zia has been facing as many as 34 lawsuits. Warrant for her arrest has been issued in four cases so far.

    Jail authorities have been asked to shift Khaleda Zia to the old jail’s female ward, known as the day-care centre, from the building she is now staying — a move, which is considered as symptom of her longer stay in jail.

    When asked if the 73-year-old former prime minister’s confinement would be prolonged, home minister Asaduzzaman Khan evaded a direct reply. “It depends on when the BNP will file an appeal and the court,” he said.

    However, a police official told Prothom Alo that the government might not back out from its strategy of keeping the BNP leadership under constant pressure.

    The country’s law and order had not deteriorated inlike what was specilated by the police before the judgement.

    Ruling Awami League leaders believe the muted reactions from the BNP are because of the strong stand of the law enforcement and the incumbents, a few of them said.

    Asked about such pressure, the home minister said lawsuits against Khaleda Zia including Zia Orphanage Trust graft case and Niko case are pending.

    ”Arrest warrant was earlier issued against her in a bus arson case. Let’s see what happens,” Asaduzzaman said but he declined to comment on whether the pending cases will be revived.

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