2004 FM killing: Ex-junior minister to be indicted

Last Updated: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 - 00:12

Dhaka: A northeastern Bangladeshi court
is expected to indict a former influential junior minister in
the 2004 murder of former finance minister Shah AMS Kibria
who was killed in a grenade attack, officials said.

"We have submitted today the supplementary chargesheet
as the re-investigations found 14 people, including (detained
former state minister) Lutfuzzaman Babar and (militant
kingpin) militant kingpin MuftyHannan involved in the murder,"
seven years ago, a police spokesman said to a news agency.

He said the the Judicial Magistrate Court of Habiganj
accepted the supplementary chargesheet and was expected to set
a date tomorrow for indictment hearing on the case.

His comments came as the Criminal Investigation
Department (CID) of police formally accused the suspects
before a court in northeastern Habiganj, the scene of the
murder and hometown of Kibria, an international bureaucrat
turned politician.

CID officials said their extended investigation into
the case found 14 people, mostly operatives of Harkatul Jihad
Bangladesh (HuJI) operatives, along with Babar to be involved
in the murder.

But, they said they kept the names of the 10
previously accused in the supplementary charge sheet leaving
their matter to be decided by the court.

Of the new 14 accused, nine were already in jail to
face the murder trial as they were arrested in course of the
probe while eight out of previous 10 accused too were in
prisons.

The high profile leader of the Awami League was killed
in a grenade attack on January 27, 2004 as he was addressing a
public rally at his constituency in Habiganj.

The incident sparked international condemnation but
subsequent police investigations yielded little results. The
Awami League had long been alleging that the past BNP-led four
party regime tried to influence the probe process to save the
"real culprits" also pointing fingers at Babar.

During the subsequent military-backed interim
government, a court on February 26, 2007 ordered a further
investigation into the case as the family members of the
ex-finance minister declined to accept the original charge
sheet through a "na-raji" petition.

They challenged the trial process initiated by the
then BNP-led four-party alliance government.

Babar is also a suspect in several other criminal
cases and await trial at different courts.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 - 00:12

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