Vol. 5 Num 1120 Wed. July 25, 2007  
Front Page

Rly Land for Sigma's HR Body
Charges pressed against Huda
Remanded again in extortion case

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) yesterday pressed charges against detained former communications minister Nazmul Huda for allocating a piece of railway land illegally to a human rights organisation run by his wife Sigma Huda.

Meanwhile, a Dhaka court placed Huda on a three-day remand in connection with a case filed for extorting Tk 1 crore from an automobile dealership.

ACC Assistant Director Mirza Azizul Islam, IO of the case, yesterday submitted the charge sheet against Huda to the court of Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Dhaka showing 27 people as prosecution witnesses.

In his charge sheet, the IO said the charges brought against Huda have been proven primarily and he should be put on trial.

On March 21, ACC Deputy Director (DD) Shafiqul Islam lodged the case against Nazmul Huda with Shahbagh Police Station saying that while Huda was at the helm of communications ministry, he adopted illegal means and abused power to allocate a piece of Bangladesh Railway land to an organisation -- Bangladesh Society for the Enforcement of Human Rights (BSEHR) -- run by his wife Sigma Huda.

In the first information report (FIR), the ACC deputy director mentioned that Huda took Tk 2.4 crore in bribe for giving the land to BSEHR, where Sigma is the secretary general.

Metropolitan Magistrate Mir Ali Reza placed Huda on a three-day remand in the case after Dhanmondi police produced him before the court and sought a seven-day remand for interrogation.

Huda was produced before the court at 12.40pm amid tight security.

The defence lawyers submitted a petition for adjournment of the remand prayer as Huda was sick. Opposing the defence plea, the prosecution argued that since Huda could not be produced before the court earlier, the hearing on the remand prayer had already been delayed for three consecutive times.

In the forwarding report, the investigation officer (IO) of the case said Huda extorted the money threatening the complainant and he needs to be quizzed to trace the extorted money.

On July 5, Matiur Rahman, managing director of Uttara Motors Ltd, filed the case against Huda with Dhanmondi Police Station complaining that Huda had forced the company to pay Tk 1 crore.

According to the case statement, Huda had 'threatened to kill' the complainant and shut down his business if he failed to make the payment.

A scared Rahman paid Huda Tk 50 lakh at the latter's office by three cheques on three dates -- December 1, 2002; Feb 19, 2003; and March 11, 2003. Another Tk 50 lakh was paid in cash at Huda's residence.

Joint forces arrested Huda from his Dhanmondi residence on February 4 on charges of corruption.

Nazmul Huda