Nineteen people, including two former ministers, were sentenced to death while Tarique Rahman, son of former Prime Minister Khaleda Zia, was given life imprisonment by a Bangladesh court on Wednesday for their role in the 2004 grenade blasts that killed 24 people and injured 500.
The verdict was delivered amid tight security in the capital Dhaka and can be appealed within two months.
The 2004 attack targeted Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s rally who was the leader of the opposition at the time. A series of grenades exploded as she was stepping off a truck which was used as a dais for the rally on Bangabandhu Avenue.
Hasina survived with a partial hearing loss.
Lutfozzaman Babar, former State Minister for Home, and Abdus Salam Pintu, former Deputy Minister for Education, were among 19 people sentenced to death, bdnews24.com reported.
The sentence also included jail terms for 11 other people.
Law Minister Anisul Huq said the government will seek scaled-up punishments for Rahman and Chowdhury. He said that Tarique Rahman masterminded the attack and that he deserved the death penalty.
(With agency inputs)