2 ministers need not resign, says law minister

Law Minister Anisul Huq today said it is not necessary for Food Minister Qamrul Islam and Liberation War Affairs Minister AKM Mozammel Huq to resign from their posts following the recent Supreme Court verdict.

"I think, there is no necessity for them [two ministers] to resign from their posts,” the law minister told journalists at his office during a press conference.

The law minister made the remark amid fresh debate among legal experts whether the two ministers should resign immediately for violation of oath for making contemptuous comments.

The two ministers -- Qamrul Islam and AKM Mozammel Huq -- have violated their oath of office, the Supreme Court has observed in its full judgement released on September 1 of a verdict that had convicted the two ministers of contempt of court around six months back.

On March 27, an eight-member Supreme Court bench, headed by the chief justice, convicted the two ministers of contempt of court after refusing to accept their unconditional apologies.

The apex court ordered the ministers to pay the money to Islamia Eye Hospital and National Liver Foundation of Bangladesh within a week. They complied with the court's order, as in case of failure, they would have to serve seven days in jail.

This was the first time the SC sentenced two sitting ministers for contempt.

On September 5, SC lawyer Eunus Ali Akond filed a writ petition was with the High Court challenging the legality of the two ministers holding office.

On the same day, at a press conference at BNP’s Nayapaltan office, party Standing Committee Member Barrister Moudud Ahmed demanded that the duo resign for the violation, saying a minister cannot retain his post on being punished by a court.

Govt mulls legal step regarding war criminals’ property

About the issue of war criminals’ properties, the law minister said the government will take legal step in this regard.

Different organisations and victims have been demanding confiscation of the properties of all war criminals.   

 “We are mulling for taking actions through legal procedure in this regard,” the minister said.

The actions can be taken by amending International Crimes (Tribunal) Act 1973 or by formulating a new law.

About the properties of war criminals, who have already been executed, the minister said their heir have got the properties. In that case, a separate law will be needed, he added.

source:Daily star