A Dhaka court yesterday deferred to April 19 for hearing on charge framing against BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and 10 others in the Niko graft case following a time petition.
Judge Mahmudul Kabir of Special Judge Court-9, set up in Government Madrasah-e-Alia in the city's Bakshibazar area, passed the order after barrister Moudud's lawyer Taherul Islam Tauhid submitted a petition seeking an adjournment.
In the petition, Tauhid said Moudud was busy with the hearing of a case with the High Court, adding that the hearing should be adjourned.
Earlier on February 4, Moudud, one of the 11 accused in the case, started placing submissions whether the charges brought against him would be framed.
While Khaleda Zia's counsel Sanaullah Mia submitted a petition saying his client could not appear before the court as she is in jail after being convicted in another graft case.
And former state minister for energy AKM Mosharraf Hossain and five others, now on bail, were present in the court during yesterday's hearing.
Three of the accused are still at large.
The ACC filed the Niko case in December 2007 accusing that Khaleda and several others had abused powers to award a gas exploration and extraction deal to Canadian company Niko when she was the prime minister between 2001 and 2006.
In May, 2008, the anti-graft watchdog pressed charges against Khaleda and 10 others.