Zia may seek legal course against son's detention
Mar 11, 2007 - 5:30:55 PM

Dhaka, March 11 - Former Bangladesh prime minister Khaleda Zia has sought legal counsel to defend her politician-son Tarique Rahman who has been netted by the caretaker government in its anti-corruption drive.

She consulted top lawyer Khandakar Mahbubuddin Ahmed Saturday even as authorities said they had obtained incriminating documentn from Rahman who has been accused of extorting Taka 10 million - from a businessman who has since been made a complainant.

Rahman will be tried by a speedy trial court once the charge sheet is prepared. The trial must be completed in 45 days. If convicted, Rahman faces two to five years of imprisonment, New Age newspaper said Sunday.

While most of the politicians arrested belong to Zia's Bangladesh Nationalist Party -, Awami League's joint general secretary Obaidul Qader was sent to jail for 30 days.

Public protests by BNP workers and Awami League's calling Qader's detention 'unfortunate' earlier this week led the government to place a blanket ban on all political activities.

Newspapers Sunday carried reports, with pictures, of offices of various political parties being locked or with negligible visitors and activities.

Since the government launched a drive mid-January after a national emergency was imposed and general elections, scheduled for Jan 22 cancelled, an estimated 45,000 people, including former ministers and lawmakers, officials and businessmen, have been detained and are being prosecuted under the law of the land.

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