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B'desh courts issue 2 arrest warrants against Zia

Press Trust of India  |  Dhaka 

Two arrest warrants were issued today against Bangladesh's Opposition leader and former Khaleda Zia after she failed to attend hearings in graft and defamation cases, a move her lawyer said was a "ploy by the government" to stop her from returning home from

The first warrant was issued by Dhaka Metropolitan magistrate Nur Nabi over a case accusing her of undermining the country's map and national flag. She failed to appear before the even though the had asked her repeatedly to attend todays hearing in the case.

Zia, 72, is currently in on a private tour.

The second warrant was issued by Dhaka's Fifth Special Judge's Court issued within an hour after the first one as she evaded appearance in a corruption case involving embezzlement of funds of an orphanage named after her husband and slain president Ziaur Rahman.

"The courts issued arrest warrants in two cases on the same day. It's a ploy by the so that she can't return home," Zia's counsel Sanaullah Mia told reporters.

The move came after Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's launched a crackdown on the Opposition, arresting leaders and supporters of Zia's Nationalist Party (BNP).

may hold a general election next year, the first since polls in 2014 which Zia's BNP boycotted over fears they would be rigged.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, October 12 2017. 17:32 IST