BNP President Khaleda Zia. – New Age file photo.
Home Secretary Asaduzzaman Khan said on Tuesday that there was no legal possibility to allow Bangladesh Nationalist Party Chairperson Khaleda Zia to seek treatment as advised by the Ministry of Act on a request from his family.
He said, however, that they would consult further if necessary.
“We have studied the opinion of the Minister of Justice. We will consult with more people if it seems necessary. But there is no legal possibility to give it authorization according to the opinion of the Minister of Law which has been sent to us, ”said Asaduzzaman, answering questions from reporters in his secretariat office.
Asked whether the government would examine the issue on humanitarian grounds, the interior minister said the BNP president’s sentences were suspended for this reason.
Justice Minister Anisul Huq said on Monday his ministry had sent its opinion to the Home Office to rule on the request made by the BNP president’s brother for permission to take him abroad for better treatment.
The Minister of Justice received the file on November 21.
He said he had to keep the opinion confidential until the prime minister saw the case.
Responding to a question, the Minister of Justice said that there was no possibility of reconsidering the chapter passed and closed under the six subsections of article 401 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Anisul, also a lawyer by profession, said the explanation he gave earlier regarding the legal obstacle to reconsideration of an application that had been processed earlier under Section 401 was legal.
The family of former Prime Minister Khaleda has made similar requests to the Home Office on several occasions, but the Justice Ministry said earlier in its opinion that such a legal option does not exist.
On November 23, the Minister of Justice assured a delegation of pro-BNP lawyers to review their memorandum asking the government for authorization to send Khaleda Zia abroad for better treatment on humanitarian grounds.
They called on the minister to find a legal way to send a sick Khaleda abroad for treatment on humanitarian grounds.
“I received the file on November 21 but I have not yet given an opinion because I wanted to listen to you (pro-BNP lawyers),” Anisul said.
Elsewhere, speaking to a program in Manikganj, BNP General Secretary Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir said: “Khaleda is now being treated in a hospital in the capital, at the crossroads of life and death.
“The leader who has worked for democracy for a long time is not allowed to go abroad for treatment by the government which has usurped state power. They are making false claims about his treatment. It’s a deception, “he added.
He said the government can send the head of the BNP abroad in accordance with article 401 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.
Fakhrul urged the government to immediately allow Khaleda to travel abroad for treatment.
“Or, if something bad happens to Khaleda Zia, this government will be held responsible,” he added.
In a new request to the Home Office on November 11, Khaleda’s family again requested permission to take her abroad for better treatment.
The 76-year-old former PM, who suffers from multiple illnesses including post-Covid complications, was taken to Evercare Hospital on November 13, six days after returning from hospital.