DHAKA – Bangladesh’s main opposition leader and former prime minister Khaleda Zia, sentenced to prison in a corruption case, returned to jail on Thursday after a month-long treatment at a hospital in Dhaka.
The move to release the Bangladesh Nationalist Party chief from hospital came hours before the country’s election authority was set to announce the date for next general elections.
“After a treatment of nearly one month, she returned back to her place today. Her condition is stable now,” Abdullah-Al-Harun, director of state-run Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University, told reporters in Dhaka.
Zia’s lawyers, however, alleged that they were not informed about the decision to transfer her back to jail.
“We tried to speak to the hospital authorities. But no one received our call,” Zia’s attorney Joynal Abedin told EFE.
“We don’t it think it was fair to take her to jail without giving her proper treatment,” he said.
Zia, 73, was moved to the hospital on Oct. 6 from old Dhaka Central jail following a court order.
She was convicted of charges of graft and abusing her power during her term as prime minister between 1991-1996 and 2001-2006.
After an appeal by the Anti-Corruption Commission, the High Court in Bangladesh on Oct. 30 doubled her prison sentence from five years to 10 for embezzling funds of around $200,000 meant for an orphanage.
She was sentenced to seven years in jail in another graft case on Oct. 29.