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Bangla court accepts graft charges against Khaleda Zia

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SummaryA Bangladeshi court Tuesday gave a go-ahead for the trial of former premier Khaleda Zia in a graft case involving her charitable trust

A Bangladeshi court Tuesday gave a go-ahead for the trial of former premier Khaleda Zia in a graft case involving her charitable trust, which could end up preventing the opposition leader from contesting next year’s polls.

A Dhaka court took cognizance of the graft charges against 67-year-old Zia after she appeared before the court.

“The chargesheet is taken into cognizance,” a court official said quoting Metropolitan Sessions Judge M Zahirul Haque as saying.

As Zia left the court premises, hundreds of opposition activists thronged the area, halting traffic, chanting slogans and calling for the “false charge” to be scrapped.

The court also issued a warrant ordering the arrest of now fugitive ex-political secretary of Zia and co-accused, Haris Chowdhury, while setting Jan. 31 as the next date for police to submit a compliance report. The other accused are Chowdhury’s assistant private secretary Ziaul Islam Munna and former Dhaka City Corporation Mayor Sadeq Hossain Khoka’s assistant private secretary Monirul Islam Khan. Both have been granted bail.

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