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19 February, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Corruption allegations against EED chief engineer

STAFF REPORTER, Dhaka
Corruption allegations against EED chief engineer

Allegations of corruption, irregularities and nepotism have been made against the chief engineer of the education engineering department (EED) under the education ministry. The ministry has already formed a three-member probe committee, led by senior secretary of the Secondary and Higher Education Division under the education ministry, to investigate the allegations against EED chief engineer Dewan Mohammad Hanzala. It is learnt that though Hanzala was supposed to retire in 2015, he managed to extend his tenure by a year and later increased his service term for two more years on a contractual basis.

Moreover, he did not show any freedom fighter’s certificate when he joined the job in 1981, even though he got the job on the basis of the freedom fighter status. A case is currently in the higher court in this regard. There is also an allegation against him of forming a syndicate that is involved in irregularities and corruption in the execution of different work.

Deputy minister of the education ministry, Mohibul Hasan Chowdhury, said: “We have received various allegations against the EED chief engineer. I summoned him to inquire about the illegal construction of a building of Jagannath University. Later, a three-member probe committee was formed to investigate it. We'll know more after the investigation.”

“No one will be spared if found involved in any corruption. We can't take action against anybody just on the basis of allegations. Action will be taken following the rules,” he added.  

The EED looks after the development of infrastructure, construction of new buildings, reconstruction, maintenance and repair work, and purchase of furniture for educational institutions.

A review of 108 jobs completed in 2017 in the Dhaka metropolitan area revealed several irregularities. Most of those were related to maintenance and repair projects, while a few also involved construction works. Generally, a maintenance job requires Tk. 3–5 lakh, but most of those contracts were givem allocations of Tk. 10 lakh.

EED sources said such high sanctions were unusual and raised questions.

Accusing Hanzala of nepotism, the sources said most of those jobs were given to the family members of the EED chief engineer and the syndicate.

The work orders were given to Padma Construction, a firm run by Hanzala's brother Abdul Hye, to Firoza Enterprise, a firm owned by hey's wife, and to concerns run by other relatives.

Sources said a work order was given to Shams Enterprise for construction works of Azimpur Home Economic College at an estimated cost of Tk. 1.69 crore. This firm was paid a bill of Tk. 65 lakh in June 25, 2017. Again, another bill of Tk. 65 lakh for the same work was given just three days later.

Firoza Enterprise completed the extension work of Eden College for Tk. 2.17 lakh, while it got the job of constructing toilets and sewerage for Home Economics College for Tk. 14.35 lakh.

Work orders have been given to Saptadipa Sangsad for the extension work of a storeroom of  Government Science College at a cost of Tk. 19.99 lakh.

It received the repair and maintenance work of the third floor of Home Economics College,and four other jobs at a cost of Tk. 14.91 lakh.

Saptadipa Sangsad belongs to Hanzala’s cousin Abdul Haque.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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