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Kibria murder trial deferred again for lack of witnesses

Published : 28 Jan 2023 01:41 AM | Updated : 28 Jan 2023 09:05 PM

The 18th death anniversary of Shah AMS Kibria, a former finance minister and senior Awami League leader, was observed Friday.

However, the trial of the murder case is yet to make significant progress. Due to the non-appearance of regular witnesses, the date of recording depositions is being deferred repeatedly.

Two cases – one for murder and another under the Explosive Substances Act – filed in this incident are currently pending in the Sylhet Speedy Trial Tribunal. On January 21, the trial was deferred to February 19 as there was no witness present before the court.

Sarwar Ahmad Chowdhury Abdal, the official counsel of the case, said there are 171 witnesses in the chargesheet, of which the depositions of 47 witnesses have been recorded so far.

Even a warrant has been issued against the witnesses, but no witness appeared before the court on the last fixed date, he added.

On January 27, 2005, Kibria and four others were killed in a grenade attack on an Awami League rally in the Baidderbazar area of Habiganj. Around 70 people, including incumbent Habiganj-3 constituency parliamentarian Abu Jahir and others were injured.

After three rounds of the probe, the investigation officer, Sylhet’s ASP (CID) Meherun Nesa Parul filed a supplementary chargesheet against 32 persons by including 11 new names on Dec 21, 2014.

She accused 35 persons including Khaleda Zia’s former political secretary Harris Chowdhury, the then Sylhet Mayor Ariful and Habiganj Mayor Gaus.

The trial of the murder case began in September 2015.

A total of 32 people, including former State Minister for Home Lutfozzaman Babar, were indicted in the murder case in 2015.

The investigation was delayed by 10 years. The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the police investigated the case thrice. The depositions of 43 witnesses among 171 have been recorded while charges were framed on October 22, 2020, in the case filed under The Explosives Act.