Health

Law ministry sending its opinion to home on Khaleda appeal

“The ministry has given its opinion after reviewing the appeal, The documents will be sent to the home ministry and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s office will approve it afterwards. We’re not able to reveal the decision until the process ends,” Law Minister Anisul Huq said on Monday.

His remarks indicate that the law ministry has not had a change of heart on the decision concerning Khaleda’s treatment abroad.

The family decided to file the appeal following doctors’ advice after Khaleda, who has been hospitalised with COVID-19, complained of breathing distress. Convicted in two corruption cases, she is out on a suspended sentence granted by the government in line with Section 401 of the Penal Code.

The government needed to see if there was any scope to relax the conditions on Khaleda’s suspended sentence, Minister Huq had earlier told the reporters.

“It was an executive order; now the court has no scope to work on it,” he had observed.

Khaleda had been living in her Gulshan residence since the government granted her a suspended sentence in March 2020.

She had served 25 months out of 17 years of prison sentences in two corruption cases involving the Zia Orphanage Trust and Zia Charitable Trust.

The government imposed two conditions on the suspended sentence: Khaleda will not be able to travel abroad and she must receive treatment at home.

The 76-year-old politician had been undergoing treatment at Evercare Hospital in the capital since Apr 27 after she had tested positive for the coronavirus on Apr 11. She was taken to the hospital again on Nov 13 and diagnosed with liver cirrhosis.

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Khaleda’s family have applied multiple times for taking her abroad immediately for treatment. The authorities had rejected the application every time citing the matter of Khaleda’s suspended sentence.

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