BNP senior leader Nazrul Islam Khan on Thursday said the contents of former Chief Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha’s book, ‘A Broken Dream: Rule of Law, Human Rights and Democracy’, have exposed that Bangladesh’s judiciary has now no ‘freedom’.
“The contents of his (Sinha’s) book went viral on Facebook and other social media platforms. He wrote many things in his book which manifested that the judiciary is not independent,” he said.
Speaking at a discussion, the BNP leader also said Sinha’s comments proved that the government and its different organs are ‘regulating’ the judiciary resorting to various tactics.
Nagorik Odhikar Andolon Forum arranged the programme at the Jatiya Press Club.
Nazrul, also a BNP standing committee member, said though the judiciary is not legally under the administration, the reality is that a lower court judge could not stay in the country for ‘acquitting’ Tarique Rahman in a case while a Chief Justice ‘was forced’ to leave the country and resign for giving some observations in the 16th amendment case verdict.
Amid the row over some of his observations in the 16th amendment verdict, Justice SK Sinha, the 21st Chief Justice of the country, stepped down on November 10 last year while he was abroad.
The BNP leader said the government wants to obliterate the opposition political parties, press freedom and the independence of the judiciary only to cling onto power.
He called upon the government to come to the path of democracy shunning its ‘repressive’ acts, and take steps for holding a credible election after releasing their chairperson Khaleda Zia from jail.
Otherwise, he warned, that they will wage a united movement to force the government to concede to their demands.
Earlier at a press conference at the BNP’s central office, party senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi said former Chief Justice Sinha in his book narrated how the government took the judiciary under its ‘control’ by forcing him to leave the country and resign.
The BNP leader said, “In his autobiography, he (Sinha) wrote that he was forced to leave the country due to threat and pressure by the government. He also clearly narrated that he was intimidated and threatened by the intelligence agencies to leave the country, and compelled him to resign after holding his family hostage.”
Rizvi alleged that Sinha’s statements manifested that the government implemented its number-1 mission by jailing and convicting Khaleda Zia in a ‘false’ case after establishing its control over the judiciary ‘at gunpoint’.
The BNP leader said the government is now going to implement its second mission through the verdict in August-21 grenade attack case to be delivered on October 10.
He also said the fixing date for pronouncing verdict in the August-21 case ahead of the national election is part of the government’s well-designed plot.
Rizvi said people have doubts over justice in the case as the ruling party leaders are saying in advance that BNP will fall in a serious danger after the pronouncement of the verdict.