Former jute and textile minister Abdul Latif Siddiqui has been sent to jail as a Bogura court has denied him bail in a corruption case.
The court of Senior Special Judge Naresh Chandra Sarkar passed the order on Thursday after rejecting the bail petition. Latif Siddiqui was present in the court during the hearing.
The case was filed against Latif Siddiqui by the Anti-Corruption Commission for misusing power and damaging government property.
According to the case statement, Latif Siddiqui sold 2.38 acres of land of Bangladesh Jute Mill Corporation at Dariapur village in Bogura’s Adamdighi upazila to one Begum Jahanara without any tender for just Tk23 lakh.
The amount was slightly over one-third of the property’s assumed market value of Tk64 lakh at the time.
Later, a corruption case was filed with Adamdighi Police Station accusing Siddiqui and Jahanara.
Siddiqui's offence was to sell the government-owned land and incurring a loss of Tk40.70 lakh to the public exchequer.
The fall of Latif’s political career
Abdul Latif Siddiqui, the former lawmaker of Tangail-4, fell under government’s red eye on 28 September 2014 after he had made some derogatory comments against Hajj, Tabligh-e-Jamaat, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and the prime minister’s son -- Sajeeb Wazed Joy.
Following a huge wave of protest against his comment, on October 12 the same year, he was removed both from cabinet and Awami League (AL) presidium. Twelve days later, he also lost his primary membership in the party.
On October 14, the AL sent a show-cause notice to Latif as to why he would not be expelled from the party permanently for acting against the organisation's charter.
The party informed the then Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury of the decision on July 5. She later sought the Election Commission’s (EC) opinion over legality of Latif's parliamentary membership.
Later on July 16, the EC asked Latif to explain why his parliamentary seat would not be vacated. The commission also asked the AL to give its explanation over this issue the same day.
In reply, Latif and the AL sent separate letters on August 2 to the EC defending their respective stances.
Latif claimed the AL’s decision to expel him from the party was a mistake, while the AL requested the commission to scrap his membership following Representation of the People Order (RPO) as he was elected an MP under the party's election symbol.
The EC arranged the hearing after that explanation on August 23 and was supposed to give a verdict two weeks later.
Hours before the decision, the Supreme Court upheld a High Court order that scrapped Latif's appeal challenging the commission's decision to hold the hearing.
Following all these, on September 1, Abdul Latif Siddiqui resigned from the parliament.
In the 11th parliamentary election, Abdul Latif Siddqui, announced independent candidacy from Tangail-4 constituency. He even started a hunger strike demanding a fair election environment.
However, he withdrew himself from the election race later on November 23, 2018.