Ershad’s radar purchase case

SC overrules HC order

DHAKA : The Supreme Court on Sunday overruled a High Court order that had asked for examining the testimonies of the witnesses in the chargesheet in the radar purchase graft case against former President and Jatiya Party chairman HM Ershad, reports UNB.
A four-member bench of the Appellate Division, led by Chief Justice SK Sinha, passed the order after disposing of a leave-to-appeal petition filed by former Air Force chief Air Vice-Marshal (retd) Sultan Mahmud.
Earlier on November 24, the High Court ordered the authorities concerned to examine the testimonies of the witnesses in the chargesheet and dispose of the case by March 31 next.
Advocate Shamsuddin Babul stood for the petitioner while Advocate Khurshid Alam represented the Anti Corruption Commission.
A total of 38 people were made prosecution witnesses in the chargesheet. Of them, the court recorded testimonies of 12.
The ACC recently filed a review petition with the High Court seeking its order for recording the testimonies of the rest witnesses.
Now-defunct Bureau of Anti-Corruption filed the case against former military ruler Ershad and four others with Cantonment Police Station on May 4, 1992.
Abdus Sattar Sarkar, a former BAC official, pressed charges against them on October 27, 1994. The court framed charges against the accused on August 12, 1995.
The other accused in the case are former Air Force chief Air Vice-Marshal (retd) Sultan Mahmud, former Air Force chief Momtaj Uddin Ahmed, and Director of United Traders AKM Musa.
According to the case statement, the accused, including Ershad, in collusion with each other, bought a high-powered and two low-looking level radars that caused a loss of Tk 640,442,918 to the national exchequer.