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What steps against Taka 364mn abuse from Rooppur project: HC
The High Court

What steps against Taka 364mn abuse from Rooppur project: HC

Dhaka, July 21 – The High Court has wanted to see the action of Housing and Public Works ministry against 50 people, who were involved in misappropriating TK 36.40 crore in Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant (RNPP).
After expressing satisfaction over the investigation report that found 50 people involvement in misappropriating Tk 36.40 crore from the project in purchasing furniture and other household items for its officials and other employees.
Deputy attorney general Amatul Karim submitted the probe report before the HC bench of Justice Tariq ul Hakim and Justice Md Shohrowardi in line with its previous directive.
During yesterday’s proceeding, Supreme Court lawyer Barrister Sayedul Haque Suman, who filed a writ petition with the High Court over the matter, told the HC that he has satisfied over the probe report in this regard.
The authorities concerned should take departmental action against the offenders as well as criminal cases should file against them for committing misappropriation in a sensitive project, the lawyer said.
Attorney general Mahbubey Alam told the court that the probe body has already identified the officials involved in misappropriating project’s money. Now, we can see on what action the authorities concerned take against them for the offences, he added.
Then, the HC bench came up with the order saying that it would see the action of authorities concerned in this regard in line with the probe report.
It also set October 20 for next order over the matter.
In its report, the two probe committees—formed over the alleged graft in the RNPP housing project— have found the evidence of Tk36.40 crore being misappropriated.
They also found involvement of 50 people, of whom eight are engineers of the Public Works Department (PWD)—including already-withdrawn Executive Engineer Md Masudul Alam—in the scam, and recommended punishing them.
A former chief engineer, who is on a one-year post-retirement leave (PRL), is also among the eight officials.
The probe bodies — one belonging to the PWD and the other to the Public Works Ministry — mentioned their findings and placed several recommendations.
The reports said as per the agreement with the housing project authorities, the contractors were supposed to charge nearly Tk113.62 crore to supply furniture and electronic gadgets on several floors of four 20-storey buildings.
But the furnishing articles and electronic gadgets supplied were worth around Tk77.22 crore– around Tk36.4 crore less than the estimated sum of money.
The investigation committees also recommended proper measures to recover and deposit the “misappropriated” money to the national coffer.
The committees were formed on May 19, three days after a media outlet reported on cost-related anomalies in the housing project called Green City of the RNPP project in Iswardi Upazila of Pabna.
Following a writ petition, the HC on July 2 this year asked the attorney general’s office to collect the housing and public works ministry formed committees’ report on the irregularities in purchasing furniture and other household items for officials and other employees of Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant and to submit it before the court in two weeks.
The court also issued a rule asking the government to explain in four weeks why it has failed to ensure honesty and transparency in purchasing the furniture and other household items for the officials and employees on the power plant.
According to reports in the media as well as the social media, the purchase prices of various items to furnish the project’s 966 apartments for the Russian engineers and others were abnormally higher than the market prices.
The reports claimed that each pillow was bought for Tk 5,957 and the cost of carrying it to an apartment was Tk 760. An electric stove cost Tk 7,747 and the carrying cost from the ground floor to the top one cost Tk 6,650.
The reports also said that the price of an electric iron was Tk 4,154 and the carrying cost Tk 2,945.
Media reports also said that the salary of the project director was Tk 4.96 lakh. – Staff Reporter