Staff Correspondent: The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has sent letters to eleven officials of AB Bank including the bank’s chairman asking for issuing a ban on them from leaving country in order to probe a case filed over misappropriating Tk 383 crore which was taken from the bank as loan.
A total of 16 people including former foreign minister of the then BNP tenure and chairman of Citycell M Morshed Khan and his wife were named in the case.
The letters, which were sent to the special branch of police from the ACC’s head office on Thursday, sought the ban on the aforesaid persons, confirmed the public relations office of the anti-graft watchdog.
The ban was issued on former chairman of AB Bank M Wahidul Haque, directors Firoz Ahmed and Sayed Afjal Hossen, former director Md Abdul Awal, Mohammad Imtiaj Hossen, Shishir Ranjon Bosh, Fahmidul Haque, Md Mejbahul Haque, Jakia Shahrud Khan Runa, Mishal Kobir and BB Shah Roy.
“It is necessary to issue a ban on the eleven persons from leaving country for the sake of investigation as the accused persons along with their families were trying to leave the country,” according to a letter signed by ACC's Deputy Director Shamsul Alam, also the investigation officer of the case.
Earlier on June 10, a ban was issued on M Morshed Khan and his wife from leaving country.
ACC Deputy Director Sheikh Abdus Salam filed the case with Banani Police Station against M Morshed Khan, his wife Nasrin Khan and 14 others for allegedly embezzling over Tk 383 crore of AB Bank on June 28, 2017.
Besides, Morshed Khan and his wife Nasrin Khan, Citycell’s Vice Chairman Asghar Karim, its Chief Executive Officer Mehboob Chowdhury, two former managing directors of AB Bank Kaiser Ahmed Chowdhury and M Fazlur Rahman, and former MD of the bank Moshiur Rahman Chowdhury have been made accused in the case.
According to the case statement, AB Bank unlawfully guaranteed loans of Tk 348.5 crore given to Pacific Bangladesh Telecom Ltd (PBTL) by eight other banks and non-bank financial institutions. The board and other top officials of AB Bank approved the move without taking any collateral from PBTL, in violation of the rules and regulations of Bangladesh Bank.
As the guarantor, AB Bank was bound to pay off the loans with the interest -- over Tk 383 crore -- after the borrower failed to repay the money in a year.
Misusing the guarantee, PBTL in a planned way took away Tk 348.5 crore from the eight banks and institutions, reads the ACC case statement.
When PBTL failed to repay the loan within a year, the lenders asked AB Bank to give them the pay and eventually, the bank paid the money by 2015.
Country’s oldest cellphone operator Citycell got licence in 1989 but it remained shut since 2016 for unpaid amount.
risingbd/Dhaka/July 11, 2019/MA Rahman/AI