The Chief Metropolitan Magistrate(CMM) Court of Dhaka on Monday took cognisance of bus torching charge against BNP Acting Secretary General MirzaFakhrul Islam Alamgir and 44 other leaders and activists of BNP-led 18-Partyalliance.
Metropolitan Magistrate Md ErfanUllah also rejected the bail petition of BNP lawmaker Barrister Mahbub UddinKhokon on surrender in this case and passed orders to send him to jail.
The Magistrate also issued arrestwarrants against four absconding leaders including the acting Ameer ofJamaat-e-Islam. Other three absconders are: Jamaat Assistant Secretary GeneralNurul Islam Bulbul, Islami Chhatra Shibir General Secretary Delwar HossainSayedee and Dhaka University's Jatiyatabadi Chhatra Dal Joint Secretary,Obaidul Haque Nasir. However, Nasir is already in jail in another case.
Immediately after the order ofthe CMM Court, lawyers loyal to the opposition alliance burst into rages andbrought out a procession on the court premises. The lawyers chanted slogansdemanding the withdrawal of the case.
Several lawyers kicked thecourtroom's doors and chairs .
Meanwhile, Jatiyabadi AinjibiForum, a platform of pro-BNP lawyers,decided to boycott all the judge and magistrate courts of Dhaka on Tuesday, asthe forum's Secretary General Khokon was sent to jail.
On May 9, Khokon was granted bailtill Monday in the case. In immediate reaction Khokon said on Monday, 'Thisfalse case has been filed against me for protesting the 'abduction' of EliasAli and cases against the Zia family. I am going to jail because of this falsecase as the trial court is not following the High Court's directive in grantingbail."
On Monday at noon the defencecounsels also appealed to the court for bringing five accused to the court fromjail in a micro-bus, as they are sick and between 65 and 75 years of age. Thecourt, however, rejected the plea.
The accused are: Mirza FakhrulIslam Alamgir, retired Brig Gen Hannan Shah, LDP chairman retired Col OliAhmed, Dr Khandaker Mosharraf Hossain and Pragatishil Ganatantrik Shoktichairman Shaikh Showkat Hossain Nilo. On April 29, a bus was torched in frontof the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) by alleged opposition pickets.
Following the incident policefiled the case under the Speedy Trial Act with Tejgaon Police Station accusingthe alliance leaders for their involvement in the incident.
Later, Nurul Amin, DetectiveBranch (DB) inspector of Dhaka Metropolitan Police and also the investigationofficer (IO) of the case submitted the charge sheet to the court on May 10excluding the name of one person and including two other leaders of Chhatra Daland Jatiyatabadi Swechchasebak Dal.
Magistrate Erfan Ullah, alsorejected the defence counsels' pleas to hold the hearing in presence of theaccused persons to take the charges into cognisance.
Earlier on May 16, the sameMetropolitan Magistrate had sent 33 leaders of the alliance to jail rejectingtheir bail prayers.