Two others accused with her were also granted bail. The cases would next be heard on May 5.
Defence lawyers had told the court that Zia's absence was "unintentional". Her absence was mainly owing to security reasons and her son Arafat Rahman Koko's death, her lawyer Mahbubuddin Khokon said. Zia had been living at her party office in Dhaka since January 3 after she threatened to lead an anti-government march on the first anniversary of a controversial general election. The BNP-led 20-party opposition alliance, which boycotted the general election last year, has enforced a non-stop nationwide blockade since January 5 demanding fresh parliamentary polls under a non-party caretaker government.