Khaleda to be freed to attend mother's last rites

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Dhaka, Jan 19: Detained former Bangladesh prime minister and Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) Chairperson Khaleda Zia will be released on parole today so that she could pay homage to her mother who passed away last night.

''As per Khaleda's wishes, her mother's body would be brought to her Dhaka cantonment residence by a helicopter. There, the former premier and her two sons-- Tarique and Koko-- will pay their last respects,'' Inspector General of Police (IGP) prisons Brig Gen Zakir Hasan told The Daily Star. He, however, could not confirm the time when the body will arrive and the three will be set free.

The IGP (prisons) met Khaleda Zia last night at sub-jail in Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban compound and asked her whether she would go to Dinajpur or wanted the body to be brought to Dhaka.

The former premier told Brig Hasan that she wanted her mother's body to be taken to her residence on Shaheed Moinul Road in the cantonment area.

The paper quoted sources as saying that government would send an air force helicopter to Dinajpur to fly in the body of late Taiyeba Majumder.

Ms Khaleda Zia, who was arrested on September 3 last year along with her younger son Arafat Rahman Koko on a graft charge, will be able to meet her both sons and other close family relatives.

Tarique Rahman was arrested on March 7 last year.

The three were granted parole on a written plea by the BNP.

The three would be taken to the Moinul Road residence of the former prime minister minutes before arrival of the body, which would later be taken back to Dinajpur by a helicopter and laid to rest there.

Taiyeba Majumder (87) died at Zia Heart Foundation and Research Centre in Dinajpur at 2045 hrs local time yesterday. She was suffering from old age problems.


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