Khaleda Zia’s health deteriorates further: BNP

Khaleda Zia’s health deteriorates further: BNP

Bangladesh Nationalist Party has accused the prison authorities of neglecting the health of jailed party chief Begum Khaleda Zia, saying her condition has deteriorated further.

‘The jail authorities are not paying the due attention to Khaleda Zia’s health condition,’ BNP secretary general Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir told the media at party’s Naya Paltan office.

‘Relatives, who visited the former prime minister Tuesday, said her condition had worsened,’ Fakhrul said, claiming that there was a plot to kill Khaleda in jail by denying her medical care.

Khaleda Zia, a three-time former prime minister, has been in jail since February 8 last year after she was convicted in a corruption case.

Her five-year sentence was later doubled. The BNP chairperson was also convicted in a separate corruption case later that year.

The BNP claims the cases are politically motivated and that the government is trying to keep her away from politics - charges the government denies. The party contested the December 30 national election without her, in which the ruling Awami League won 96 per cent seats in the 300 member assembly.

Unconditional release of Khaleda Zia has been her party’s main demand ever since her incarceration.

Fakhrul said the BNP chief was so ill that she could not move independently. ‘She’s also complaining of pain in different parts of her body,’ he said.

The BNP leader alleged that the medical board formed at the High Court’s order was not ensuring her treatment.

He also expressed concerns as the government had not taken any step to shift Khelada to any specialised hospital for treatment even after BNP’s March 4 meeting with the home minister.

Fakhrul demanded the BNP chief be treated at a specialised hospital. ‘If anything happens to her, the government, the jail authorities and the home ministry will have to take the responsibility,’ he said.