The Awami League yesterday walked out of the Jatiya Sangsad protesting introduction of a bill titled "The Speedy Trial Tribunal Act, 2002" in the parliament, which the opposition party described as a black law.
The AL lawmakers, led by the Leader of the Opposition and Former Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, walked out of the House angrily as Speaker Jamiruddin Sircar allowed Law Minister Moudud Ahmed to introduce the bill amid noisy protests in the opposition bench.
Minister for Law and Parliamentary Affairs Barrister Moudud Ahmed proposed the bill seeking speedy trial for certain offences, four days after a presidential ordinance on the same issue was laid in the House.
Earlier, the opposition leader requested the speaker to withdraw the speedy trial tribunal bill and another on setting up of a police staff college, which she said contained an untrue statement.
Hasina and some other opposition lawmakers also feared that the proposed law would be abused politically since it would authorise the government to select cases to be tried in the proposed tribunal.
Participating in the debate, Sheikh Hasina wondered how the bill on speedy trial tribunal was brought before disposal of notices seeking disapproval of the ordinance on the issue.
She said since the bill originates from the ordinance and since the opposition members submitted notices of disapproval under section 144 of the rules of procedure, the speaker should dispose of the notices first. Until and unless the disapproval notices are disposed of, the ordinance cannot come in the form of a bill, she argued citing the Constitution and parliament rules.
She also accused the government of misinterpreting the Constitution and dishing out falsehoods in the parliament.
Chief Whip of the Opposition Abdus Shahid and Suranjit Sengupta shared the statements by Hasina on the disapproval motion against the presidential ordinance.
[ To listen to this report click on 1600 UTC ]