A total of 582 noted citizens of the country have called upon the government to release former prime minister and BNP Chairperson Begum Khaleda Zia for her availing medical treatment abroad.

In a joint statement issued on Thursday, they said, "Former premier Khaleda Zia has been under close observation of doctors at Evercare Hospital in the capital being critically sick. This popular leader was admitted to the hospital after she fell sick on August 9 last. Physicians said she is now on the crossroad of life and death. There is nothing left in the country to provide her treatment. In order to save her life, Khaleda Zia is required to send abroad and provide treatment at an advanced centre. So, we call upon the government to send her abroad for availing advanced treatment on humanitarian ground rising above politics."

The statement has mentioned that former prime minister Khaleda Zia is now 78 years old. In spite of being an elderly woman, she has been passing through a captive life after a deliberate verdict. However, she is now staying under house arrest at the government's special permission. She is now very sick being infected with different complex diseases. She had been denied of proper medical treatment for long four years. She has also been infected with many new diseases in inhuman and unhealthy environment in jail. Besides, suffering from heart, liver, kidney and eye complications, she has been suffering from old arthritis, infected with Covid-19 and post-Covid complications. Becuase of these, Khaleda Zia's physical conditions are now very risky.

The noted citizens said the head of Khaleda Zia's personal physicians' team narrated details about her health conditions to journalists which was very worrying. "We think that a top politician of the country, a former premier, an elderly citizen, a woman and above all, a jailed individual deserves fair treatment and it is also part of her human rights. As a nation, it is our duty and responsibility to ensure her basic treatment and justice. So, we call upon the government to provide her opportunity to avail advanced treatment abroad releasing her on permanent bail through court."

The signatories to the joint statement are Prof Dr Anwar Ullah Chowdhury, Prof Dr AFM Yusuf Haider, Advocate AJ Mohammad Ali, journalist Alamgir Mohiuddin, Advocate Zainul Abedin, journalist Ruhul Amin Gazi, Prof Dr AZM Zahid Hossain, Prof Dr Sirajuddin Ahmed, Prof Dr Farhad Halim Doner< Prof Dr Tasmeri SA Islam, Prof Dr Abdul Latif Masum, Prof Dr Khalilur Rahman, Prof Dr Mosharraf Hossain Mia, journalist Rezwan Hossain Siddiqui, Dr Abdul Aziz, Prof Dr Gazi Abdul Huque, journalist MA Aziz, poet and journalist Abdul Hye Sikder, journalist Kamal Uddin Sabuj, journalist M Abdullah, journalist Kader Gani Chowdhury, journalist Syed Abdal Ahmed, journalist Mostofa Kamal Mazumder, and former secretary Abdul Halim, among others.