Graft case: Former military ruler Ershad acquitted

Last Updated: Sunday, June 19, 2011 - 20:46

Dhaka: In a major relief for Bangladesh`s
former military ruler HM Ershad, a court on Sunday acquitted him
in a graft case filed in 1995.

Judge Mohammed Zahurul Haque of the Senior Special
Judge`s Court acquitted Ershad, the chief of the Jatiya Party
which is aligned with the Awami League-led ruling grand
alliance, after the investigation officer of the case
submitted its final report, said Star online, the website of
The Daily Star today.

In a case filed on September 9, 1995, it was alleged
that Ershad during his tenure as the Bangladesh`s president
had transferred an illegal income of USD 10 million to a
foreign bank account of Mariam Mamtaj, a co-accused in the
case, the report said. Mamtaz was also let off.

Ram Mohan Nath, the Deputy Director of the
Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), on February 23 submitted a
probe report to Dhaka Chief Metropolitan Magistrate`s Court.

Nath said he had failed to gather information about
the money transfered to the Mercantile Bank in Hongkong.

Ershad, who was ousted on December 6, 1990 following a
mass uprising against him, said he had "got justice finally in
the court".

"It has been proved again that all the cases were
filed against me due to political reasons and to malign my
image," said the Jatiya Party chief, who served as the sixth
Chief of Army Staff of Bangladesh Army and later as Chief
Martial Law Administrator from 1982-1986.

"The government did not withdraw my case on political
grounds. It was the court that declared me innocent in the
case," Ershad was quoted as saying by his political secretary
Sunil Shovu Roy.

Ershad, an accused in 17 other criminal cases, was
earlier acquitted and discharged of several other criminal
cases as the prosecution failed to prove the charges against
him.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, June 19, 2011 - 20:46

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