The Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on Monday extended until July 10 this year its Chamber Court’s order that stayed High Court bail to Sohel Rana, the owner of Rana Plaza, in a murder case filed in connection with the death of 1,135 garment workers after the building collapsed in April 2013.
The apex court also fixed the same date for further hearing on the leave to appeal petition filed by the state against the HC order that granted bail to Sohel Rana in the case.
A three-member bench of the Appellate Division, headed by Chief Justice Hasan Foez Siddique, passed the order after hearing the state petition.
Deputy Attorney General Md Sarwar Hossain appeared in the hearing representing the state, while lawyer Qamrul Islam appeared for Sohel Rana.
Later Mr Sarwar Hossain said, “The apex court has extended the stay on the High Court bail order till July 10 and fixed the same date for detail hearing on the matter.”
Earlier on April 6, the High Court granted bail to Sohel Rana in the murder case filed in connection with the death of 1,135 garment workers.
The bench of Justice Md Akram Hossain Chowdhury and Justice Mohammad Ali passed the order after holding hearing on a rule that questioned earlier as to why Sohel Rana should not be granted bail.
Following a petition filed by the state the Chamber Judge of the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court on April 9 stayed the High Court order and sent the matter to the regular bench of the Appellate Division for detail hearing on it on May 8 this year. In the meantime, the state also filed a leave to appeal petition against the High Court order which came to the cause-list on Monday for hearing.
Lawyer Qamrul earlier said the number of accused in the case is 41 including Sohel Rana. Three of them, including Sohel Rana's father Abdul Khalek, have died. Thirty-seven of the rest of the 38 accused except for Sohel Rana are now on bail, the lawyer said.
The case was filed on charge of negligence in constructing the building, murder charge was included in the case later on, he added.
Qamrul said Sohel Rana may have liabilities for the collapse of Rana Plaza, but he has right to get justice. However, the engineers of Rajuk, who approved the plan of the building, and owners of the garment factory there, have also liabilities for the incident, he added.
At least 1,136 people, mostly garment workers, were killed and over 2,500 others injured as the nine-storey building came crashing down in Savar on April 24, 2013.
Hours after the disaster, Wali Ashraf, sub-inspector of Savar Police Station, had filed the murder case against building owner Sohel Rana, his father and several others.
The Criminal Investigation Department of police on May 24, 2015 pressed charges against Sohel Rana and 41 others in the murder case.
On July 18, 2016, the Dhaka District and Sessions Judge's Court framed charges against the 41 accused, including Sohel Rana, also a former Jubo League leader in Savar, in the case.