Attempt to kill Hasina: HC upholds death penalty of 10

Satkhira, Feb 17 (UNB) : The High Court (HC) on Wednesday upheld the lower court verdict sentencing 10 people to death in a case filed over the murder attempt on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Kotalipara in Gopalganj in 2000.
The High Court bench of Justice Jahangir Hossain and Justice Md Badruzzaman pronounced the verdict virtually.
The death- row convicts are: Asim Akter alias Tarek Hossain, Md Rashed Driver alias Abul Kalam, Md Yusuf alias Moshab Morol, Sheikh Farid alias Maulana Shawkat Osman, Hafez Jahangir Alam Badar, Maulana Abu Bakar, Hafez Maulana Yahiya, Mufti Shafiqur Rahman, Mufti Abdul Hye and Maulana Abdur Rouf.
The HC also acquitted Sarwar Hosain who was awarded 14 years’ imprisonment by the lower court.
Besides, the HC issued a directive to release Mahibullah alias Mafizur Rahman who got 14 years’ imprisonment as he has already served the jail term.
The HC upheld the life term jail and 14 years’ imprisonment of Mehedi Hasan alias Abdul Wadud and Anisul alias Anis, respectively.
Later, the HC fixed February 17 for delivering the judgment after law point arguments from both sides concluded on February 1.
On August 20, 2017, the Speedy Trial Tribunal-2 in Dhaka sentenced 10 people to death in the case.
Mehedi Hasan alias Abdul Wadud, one of the accused, got life term jail and was fined Tk 10,000 in the case.
The court also gave 14 years’ rigorous imprisonment to three other accused, including Md Anisul Islam alias Anis, and fined them Tk 10,000 each.
A total of 10 people, including Khandaker Kamal Uddin, were also acquitted from the murder attempt charge.
The same court also gave nine people to 20 years’ rigorous imprisonment and fined them Tk 20,000 each in another case filed under Explosive Substances Act over the unearthing of 76 kg explosives near the rally venue of then Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Kotalipara in 2000.
Those sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment are Md Yusuf alias Moshab Morol, Mehedi Hasan alias Abdul Wadud, Asim Akter alias Tarek Hossain, Md Mohibullah alias Mofizur Rahman, Mahmud Azhar, Md Rashed Driver alias Abul Kalam, Md Shah Newaz and Sheikh Md Enamul Haque.
Police recovered a 76-kilogram bomb from near a shop adjacent to Sheikh Lutfur Rahman Govt High School on July 20, 2000 where Sheikh Hasina was supposed to address a rally on July 22.
Another 40-kg heavy bomb was also recovered by an Army bomb expert squad from near the Kotalipara helipad on July 23.
Nur Hossain, sub-inspector of Kotalipara Police Station, filed a case under the Explosive Substances Act in connection with the bomb recovery incidents.
Police pressed charges against 16 people, including executed Harkat-ul-Jihad (Huji) chief Mufti Abdul Hannan, on April 8, 2001.
On June 29, 2009, police submitted a complementary charge sheet implicating nine more people.
Meanwhile, Mufti Hannan was executed on April 12, 2017 over the grenade attack on then UK High Commissioner Anwar Choudhury at Shahjalal Shrine in Sylhet in 2004.
Some one crore people will be brought under the social safety net programme to help overcome their financial losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.