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Zia went into hiding before border guard mutiny: Hasina


Dhaka : Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has hinted at a probe against opposition leader Khaleda Zia who she says was “hiding for three days” before the country’s border guard troopers mutinied in February last year.

Repeating a charge that she had made on the floor of the National Assembly last year, Hasina told a meeting of her party leaders Monday: “Why she went out from her residence riding a black-tinted glass car just before the BDR mutiny? Did she know what will happen at Pilkhana?”

Pilkhana is the Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) headquarters located in the heart of the national capital. On Feb 25 last year, thousands of troopers stationed there entered an officers’ meeting and gunned down several of them, including the force commander, Major General Shakil Ahmed.

Seventy-one people, including 57 Bangladesh Army officers on deputation to the BDR died in the two-day mutiny that took place within six weeks of Hasina’s taking power. The troopers rebelled over low wages and poor working conditions.

Media reports said Hasina asked of her arch political rival: “She was in a secret place for three days after hiding just before the BDR mutiny on February 25, 2009.”

“Where have you been? How did you know what will happen there? What was in your mind?”

She said there is a need for further investigation regarding the opposition leader’s movements on that particular day. “The reason why the opposition leader hid and the secret place should be brought into light.”

Hasina alleged that the opposition leader, her family members and her finance minister earned black money during their tenure, The Daily Star reported Tuesday.

“If you didn’t steal how did you amass black money?”