Dhaka: Tarique Rahman, the son of ex-Bangladeshi premier Kaleda Zia, and 29 others were charged on Sunday over a deadly grenade attack in 2004 on a rally of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina that killed 24 people and injured some 300 others.

Rahman, 46, has been charged for abetting the attack that also injured Hasina.

"We have submitted the supplementary charge sheet after an extended investigation into the case," CID's special superintendent Abdul Kahhar Akhand said as the charge sheet was received by the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate court.

He said that the extended investigations suggested that operatives of Harkatul Jihad al Islami (HuJI) carried out the attack on August 21, 2004 which was backed by several stalwarts of the then Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP)-led four party coalition government and security and police officials.

Akhand said their protracted investigations found the involvement of ex-state minister for home Lutfuzzaman Babar, ex-primer Khaleda Zia's political secretary Haris Chowdhury, former minister and Jamaat-e-Islami leader Ali Ahsan Mujaheed and incumbent BNP lawmaker fugitive Mofazzal Hossain Kaikobad.

The chargesheet also named three former police chiefs and ex-heads of two intelligence agencies Shahudul Haque, Ashraful Huda and Khoda Box Chowdhury and former directors general of National Security Intelligence (NSI) ex-brigadier Abdur Rahim and ex-major general Rezzakul Haidar Chowdhury, who subsequently became the chief of the agency. The charges against Rahman came just weeks after a Bangladeshi court sentenced Zia's younger son Arafat Rahman Koko to six years in prison for laundering nearly USD 1 million.

The HuJI leaders and operatives named in the chargesheet included Maulana Sheikh Abdus Salam who later floated a new outfit called IDP, Maulana Abdul Malek, Maulana Shawkat Osman alias Sheikh Farid and Mufty Shafiqur Rahman, Ratul Babu and Indian national and Pakistan-based LeT leader Abdul Majed Bhat.

The earlier chargesheet had named 22 people including former deputy minister Abdus Salam Pintu and and his brother and suspected supplier of the grenades Maulana Tajuddin and HuJI chief HuJI chief Mufty Abdul Hannan while the rests were his accomplices in the militant outfit who too were too face the trial in the case.

The development came a day after BNP's acting secretary general accused that the government was trying to involve Rahman, Zia's now expatriate elder son, in the case under a plot and said "the people will give an appropriate reply on the street" if he was made an accused in the attack.

(Agencies)