A Sylhet court on Sunday indicted 32 people, including former state minister for home Lutfozzaman Babar and suspended Sylhet City Corporation (SCC) mayor Ariful Haque, in the ex-Finance Minister SAMS Kibria murder case.
Sylhet Divisional Speedy Trial Tribunal Judge Makbul Ahsan passed the order and fixed September 21 for starting the trial in the sensational case after a long 10 years’ wait, UNB reports.
All the accused in the case, including Lutfozzaman Babar, top leader of militant group ‘Huji’ Mufti Hannan, Habiganj municipality mayor GK Gaus, who were in jail, were produced before the court during the charge framing hearing which was deferred for nine times earlier.
On September 6, the charge framing in the murder case deferred for the ninth time as suspended Sylhet City Mayor Ariful could not be produced before the court due to his sickness.
Later, the court fixed September 13 for charge framing hearing and asked the authorities concerned to submit the full medical report of suspended Mayor Arif.
The Kibria murder case was transferred to the Speedy Trial Tribunal from Habiganj Chief Judicial Magistrate’s Court on June 11 for its quick disposal.
Five people, including Kibria, were killed and 70 others injured in a grenade attack on a public rally of local Awami League at Baidder Bazar in Sadar upazila on January 27, 2005.
Awami League leader Abdul Mazid Khan filed two cases -- one for murder and another under the Explosives Substances Act -- with the Habiganj Police Station the following day.
Assistant Superintendent of CID Munshi Atique submitted a chargesheet against 10 BNP leaders and activists on March 19, 2005.
On June 20, 2011, CID Senior Assistant Superintendent Rafiqul Islam submitted a supplementary chargesheet incorporating the names of 14 more people, including Lutfozzaman Babar and Mufti Hannan, following a naraji (non-confidence) petition filed by the plaintiff.
Upon an appeal by the complainant, the High Court on May 5, 2006 stayed the proceedings of the cases.
Following another appeal by the complainant, the tribunal on May 14, 2006 ordered further investigation into the cases.
After further probe, Rafiqul submitted the first supplementary charge-sheet. However, Asma Kibria, wife of the slain minister, filed a petition with a local court expressing no-confidence in the investigation.
The court then forwarded the case documents along with the petition to the tribunal concerned.
Later on January 5, 2012, the tribunal ordered the CID to carry out further probe into the killing.