The formal trial on the sensational Sagira Morshed murder in the capital has started after 31 years, with a Dhaka court issuing an order to indict four accused for the charge.
The court has also set upcoming 11 January for hearing the witnesses in the case.
The court of Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge KM Emrul Kayesh passed the order after rejecting a plea by the defendants for exemption from the case.
The accused in the charge are Sagira's brother-in-law Dr Hasan Ali Chowdhury and his wife Sayedatul Mahmuda alias Shaheen, Hasan Ali's brother-in-law Anas Mahmud alias Rezwan and professional killer Maruf Reza.
The accused, who were already in jail, were produced before the court on Wednesday where the lawyer on behalf of Maruf Raza pleaded for exemption from the case. The state side, on the other hand, appealed for beginning the trial.
After hearing both the parties, the court ordered to frame charges against the accused.
Earlier on 26 November, the lawyer on behalf of the other accused applied to the court for their exemption.
On the same day, Maruf Reza's lawyer applied for time before indicting Maruf for the murder charge by the court. Later, the court adjourned the partial hearing and set 2 December (Wednesday) for further hearing.
Earlier on 9 March this year, Judge Emrul Kayesh accepted the chargesheet in the case filed by the Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI).
According to the case document, Sagira Morshed was shot dead on 25 July 1989 in Siddheswari area of the capital.
Her husband, Abdus Salam Chowdhury, filed a case with Ramna Police Station over the incident. Later, the police filed a chargesheet against a man named Mintu alias Montu alias Maran. A court also initiated the trial.
Later, the name of professional killer Maruf Reza came up in the case while hearing the witnesses by the court. The court ordered for a further investigation into it.
Accepting an application by Maruf, the High Court ordered for a deeper investigation and adjourned the trial for six months.
The case was revived after long 30 years and, on 16 January last, the investigating officer - PBI inspector Rafiqul Islam - filed a 1,309-page chargesheet against the four in the Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate's Court.