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Bangladesh Supreme Court stays ex-PM's bail in corruption case
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16:44, November 26, 2007

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The Bangladesh Supreme Court Monday stayed detained former prime minister Sheikh Hasina's bail granted by the High Court, which also ordered to stay the case proceedings, in a corruption case involving 30 million taka (about 428,571 U.S. dollars).

The Appellate Division simultaneously halted the High Court stay order on the case proceedings, private news agency bdnews24 reported Monday.

An Appellate Division full bench headed by chief justice Md Ruhul Amin issued the orders after hearing the petitions submitted by the government and the Anti-corruption Commission (ACC).

The High Court granted bail to Hasina, also party chief of the country's major party Awami League, in the case on Nov. 4, and stayed the case proceedings the same day.

The government and the ACC filed appeals on Nov. 8 with the Appellate Division against the High Court order.

The ACC filed a case on Sept. 2 against Hasina and six others, charging them with accepting donations of 30 million taka (about 428,571 dollars) for helping a foreign company and its local partner in setting up three private sector power projects.

The government included the case for trial under emergency powers rules (EPR) on Sept. 20.

Bangladesh president Iajuddin Ahmed on Jan. 11 declared state of emergency in Bangladesh to quell political violence between major political parties -- the Awami League and the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), over abortive parliamentary polls set for Jan. 22 this year.

On Oct. 28, Hasina petitioned to the High Court calling into question the legality of transferring the case for trial under EPR. At the same time, she appealed for bail in the case.

Hasina, who was in power from 1996 to 2001, was arrested on July 16 this year and detained in a special jail in the national parliament building complex in connection with the extortion case involving about 29.9 million taka (about 427,000 dollars).

The current military-backed caretaker government installed in January this year declared a war on corruption to clean up politics before holding general elections before the end of 2008.

Nearly 200 high-profile political leaders have so far been arrested on charges of corruption, extortion and abuse of powers. Another former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, party chief of the BNP, was arrested in a corruption case on Sept. 3.


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