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Khaleda expresses no confidence in medical board
Jailed Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson Khaleda Zia expressed no confidence in the five-member medical board formed by the government for her treatment.
The High Court bench of Justice Sheikh Hassan Arif and Justice Razik-Al Jalil adjourned until 2:00pm today the hearing on the former prime minister’s writ petition for her treatment at United Hospital in Dhaka.
Khaleda’s lawyer AJ Mohammad Ali sought time to submit evidence on the physicians of the board, saying that they were members of ruling Awami League-backed doctor organisation Swadhinata Chikitsak Parishad.
The physicians include Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University internal medicine professor Md Abdul Jalil Chowdhury, cardiology professor Md Harisul Hoque, orthopaedic surgery department chairman Abu Zafar Chowdhury, ophthalmology associate professor Tariq Reza Ali and physical medicine and rehabilitation associate professor Badrunnesa Ahmed.
The medical board after visiting Khaleda at the old Dhaka Central Jail on September 16 recommended her admission to a specialised hospital, preferably the university.
Mohammad Ali submitted to the bench a report published by Daily Star on September 17 where BNP leader and former health minister Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain said that they could not trust the doctors as the board was formed with government doctors excluding Khaleda’s physicians.
As the court asked if any of the five doctors were Swadhinata Chikitsak Parishad members, the attorney general replied, ‘no.’
The court asked if the government had any problem to provide treatment to Khaleda by university doctors of her choice, the attorney general said that it was not possible.
‘You are calling the physicians good but they have expressed no confidence in them, now where we will go,’ the court asked the attorney general.
As the court asked Mohammad Ali why Khaleda refused treatment at the university, the counsel said that she feared getting no treatment at the university as the government was in absolute control of it.
As the court asked if Khaleda had complained of deterioration of her health when she was treated last at the university, Mohammad Ali replied that she had a bad experience at that time.
As Mohammad Ali said that prime minister Sheikh Hasina and health minister Mohammad Nasim were given treatment at private hospital when they were in jail in 2007, the court said that it did not if Khaleda being a convict could get treatment at a private hospital.
The court asked why Khaleda proposed retired university doctors in the medical board.
Mohammad Ali replied that none could choose doctors for treatment of any other individual as there was an essence of health that one’s would be treated by doctors of the individual’s choice.
Mohammad Ali was assisted by Kayser Kamal.