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HC rebukes trial court judge over unusual bail

Published : 09 Sep 2021 10:10 PM | Updated : 10 Sep 2021 01:59 AM

The High Court (HC) in the full text of verdict also rebuked and cautioned a trial court’s judge for granting bail in an unusual manner to a suspended deputy inspector general (DIG-prisons) of police in a corruption case.

The full text of verdict, delivered by the HC bench of Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Md Mostafizur Rahman, was released on Thursday (September 9).

The HC bench delivered the short verdict on September 2, scrapping the lower court’s order that granted bail to Partha Gopal Banik. The higher court, however, had asked the trial court to dispose of the case next February 28. 

The trial court’s judge is Iqbal Hossain of Dhaka Special Judges Court-5. He was rebuked for granting bail to the suspended DIG-prisons of police for Sylhet range who was arrested with Tk 80 lakh in cash from his Dhaka residence.

“Such behavior and activities of a district level judge is unexpected and shameful. Granting such unusual bail is contempt of court,” the HC bench observed in the 12-page full text of verdict. 

Advocate Khurshid Alam Khan stood in the court for the Anti-corruption Commission (ACC), while Deputy Attorney General Bipul Bagmar represented the state. 

The High Court had earlier directed the trial court to expeditiously dispose of the trial proceedings of the case without granting bail to Partha Gopal Banik. However, in a virtual hearing on June 17, Judge Md Iqbal Hossain granted ad-interim bail to him, flouting the High Court order. Later, the accused was freed from jail.

Granting the bail had drawn flak from various quarters including the High Court. News items were also published in this regard. 

Against this backdrop, the High Court on June 28 sought a written explanation from the judge of the trial court. On August 19, Judge Md Iqbal Hossain apologised to the HC for granting the unusual bail. Later on August 22, he sought the apology in a written explanation submitted before the HC bench. 

In the full text of verdict, the HC bench said that the judges must deliver verdicts and orders in the open court in any case. The bench, however, cautioned Judge Md Iqbal Hossain about discharging responsibilities in future.

The HC bench had delivered the verdict following an appeal filed by the ACC challenging the order of the Special Judge Court-5 of Dhaka granting bail to Partha Gopal Banik.

Earlier on January 25 this year, another HC bench of Justice Md Nazrul Islam Talukder refused to grant bail to the suspended DIG.

On July 28 in 2019, Partha Gopal Banik was arrested after his interrogation at the commission headquarters on charges of irregularities and corruption and Tk 80 lakh was recovered during a raid at his residence in the capital. According to ACC, the money was earned through bribery, corruption and irregularities.

The suspended DIG along with his wife had appeared at the commission headquarters in connection with a case lodged against them for amassing illegal wealth of about Tk 3.14 crore.