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Truth Commission for Businessmen is facing all-out criticism October 7, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CORRUPTION, GOVERNANCE, POLITICS.
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Few days back Law Adviser Barrister Moinul Hussain disclosed that Government is thinking of forming Truth Commission for Businessmen as the economy of the country is affected because of the arrest of the businessmen, the business community is not gaining confidence and the business houses are in difficulty in carrying out their work because of the absence of their bosses.

 

The concept of Truth Commission is not new for Bangladesh. The Truth Commission or like were formed in many countries for confession of the crimes and reconciliation such as in South Africa etc.

 

But immediately after the disclosure of the idea, criticism from different quarters poured in for considering a special quarter separately. Many raise the question why the businessmen will be considered separately? They are equally at fault for rampant corruption that is prevailing  in our country for years. As someone says the politicians, beau crates and the businessmen form the unholy alliance to make illegal money in our country.

 

Many argue that if there is any Truth Commission it should be for all. In the constitution , there is no provision for any section to be considered separately. All are same to the eyes of the law.

 

Many argued that the Government unnecessarily magnifying the role of arrested businessmen. The release of the businessmen will have no impact on the economy or the price of the essentials rather it may encourage more corruption by the businessmen in future.

 

The ordinary citizen feels that if the Government thinks of forming Truth Commission, it should form it for all. All section of corrupts whether politicians, businessmen, beau crates or professionals should be allowed to get the opportunity to confess, surrendered their wealth earned illegally , quit politics (politicians) or lose their jobs (beau crates & professionals). It may decrease the legal and physical load of the Government and save the Government from lengthy legal complexity. It will also allow the Government to focus attention to other important issues.

 

But before coming to a decision, the Government must rethink that privileges to the corrupts do not jeopardize its own declared objective of forming a new society and giving a  solid foundation for democracy in Bangladesh.

 

An ordinary citizen. 

 

 

 

TIB reports corruptions in NGOs in Bangladesh October 6, 2007

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Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) Research Officer Shadhan Kumar Das presented a study titled ‘Problems in good governance in the NGO sector: the way forward’ in a discussion meeting at Cirdap Auditorium in the capital recently. TIB trustee Board chairman Professor Mujaffar Ahmed presided over the meeting.

The study took into account the activities of 20 NGO’s operating in different districts of six division in the country. On them, one is an international NGO, eight are national NGOs and 11 are local NGOs.

The study observed that many NGO’s are registered with the government in exchange of bribes and some of those have existence only in paper and the government officials assisted them in the process.

The range of corruption could not be assessed as the NGOs did not provide TIB with adequate information and the NGO chiefs did not cooperate properly. The study said.

Due to lack of transparency and autocratic attitude of the NGO chiefs, an environment is created where corrupt practices become obvious. They are not accountable to the beneficiaries, rather to the donors’ TIB Chairman said. There are only a few NGOs that receive 90 % of the resources from the donors, he added.

TIB Trustee Board Chairman cautioned that involving politics with rights-based activities may bring about dangerous result.

The study found that the NGO activities are inflated to the donors to bring money for addressing problems that are actually artificial.

The Author said that due to weak institutional framework, the NGO Affairs Bureau cannot monitor the NGO activities, while the NGOs give more than enough gifts to the donors to satisfy them and cover up their irregularities.

The study said that selection of employees and selection of auditors are not regular. The procurement process of the materials is also not transparent. Retired high officials are appointed in the Governing body to help in the administration.

The study recommends a) formation of an independent umbrella body to monitor the NGOs’ activities b) formulation of a guideline for formation of governing bodies c) making all information of the NGO’s available to the stakeholders d) holding the NGOs accountable to the government, donors and beneficiaries.

The ordinary citizen had also bad experience with NGO. When he was about to have a contract with an NGO, he was cautioned not to poke into the deep of the matters.

An ordinary citizen

Post Script:

6/10/07

The Federation of NGOs in Bangladesh reacted strongly against disclosure of the facts in the study and also the comment passed by the Chairman of TIB.

Ref: The Daily Star, Prothom Alo 5/10/07, Daily Star 6/10/07

 

11 Nov 07

Akbar Ali Khan, Ex Adviser said that the NGOs are becoming business minded. Very few NGO’s has got transparency and accountabilty.

13 Nov 07

NBR asked the commercial bbanks to freeze all the accounts of Proshika Cahirperson Quazi Faroque Ahmed and his family members.

 

 

Washington Post: a Quiet Revolution against corruption in Bangladesh October 5, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CORRUPTION, GOVERNANCE, POLITICS.
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A report by Emily Wax is published in Washington Post on 3rd October, 2007 saying that a quiet revolution is undergoing in Bangladesh against corruption.

The report said that corruption was ingrained in social fabric that even the Bureau of Anti-corruption accepted a bribe and Bangladesh persistently ranked top most corrupt country in the world.

The paper continued, ‘Now, two former Prime Ministers, rival politicians who have dominated the countries politics for 16 years are behind the bar. They are awaiting trials for siphoning off millions of dollars from the Government. Also incarcerated on graft, tax evasion and corruption charges are 170 members of the ruling elite, along with an estimated 15000 political underdogs, local government officials and businessmen’.

It said that they have all alleged to have stolen 150 million people who have long languished in abject poverty.

The paper added that the arrests this year are unprecedented for South Asia Region, a reputation for widespread impunity when it comes to thievery in Government corruption. ‘It is completely unthinkable in SA that a country’s demigods are now in jail’ the paper quoted Iftekher Jaman, Executive Director of Transparency International, Bangladesh chapter, ‘For most people what matters is daily life and corruption is so deep rooted here… that there has to be a painful transition. But in the long terms, it has to happen’.

The report observed that the transition , from a system in which corruption rules, to one, in which institutions do, has indeed been difficult. The interim government says these are normal growing pains, and the only way to change the system.

‘Even a little corruption is bad because it sets a tone that anything goes.’ said the Hasan Masud Chowdhury, Chairman of AntiCorruption Commission (ACC) which has replaced now defunct Bureau of AntiCorruption; “Corruption is tied to poverty. Africa has its Big Men, with their sycophants who benefited from their power. Well, Bangladesh has its Big Women and their blind followers. And why should we all be too afraid to take back what our citizens lost? And why should we all be too afraid to take back what our citizen lost?’

The paper obversed that some Bangladeshis say they are optimistic but cautiously so. The ordinary citizen is also of the same opinion.

‘What is happening here is nothing short of a quiet revolution without violence,’ the paper quoted Barrister Moinul Hussain, Care Taker Government key law and justice official.

An ordinary citizen

Ref: Washington Post 3/10/07, Prothom Alo 4/10/07

‘Massive reforms in short time may backfire’ October 1, 2007

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Former Adviser Akbar Ali Khan yesterday said that undertaking wide spread reforms within a short time may affect the country adversely is more than possibility.

He was speaking in the 4th‘Policy Debate on Reforms’ by Centre for Governance Studies (CGS) at a city Hotel where several other former Advisers, experts, politicians were also present.

Akbar told that instead of undertaking gradual reforms, it seem that they are undertaking big bang reforms, what is likely to have adverse rather than positive effects in the country. He said that big bang reforms entail dismantling institutions, structures and rebuilding from the scratch –which can have dangerous consequences if carried out within a short time.

He added ‘we have to try to reconcile our emotions with hard, political realities. We can’t give in to our emotion to change everything that we dislike right away.

There is a notion among the public, which is rather common that the present Care Taker Government has taken up more agenda than they could accomplish perfectly. This notion of the common people is expressed in the language of AKbar Ali Khan.

But are all these maneuver are out of emotion and Government has no calculation of his own. An individual can be emotional but not a collective group of leadership. So Government must have its own calculation.

But the ordinary citizen can also ask -were all these necessary- the wide spread reforms, the arrests, the cases? Will Government be able to complete all its task before it leaves by December 2008? Will the foundation be strong enough by this time so that the reform would be continued in future? Or the hastily done reform will be collapsed and backfired as predicted by Akbar Ali Khan?

Let us wait and see and let the Government make necessary adjustment in cool brain if any.

An ordinary citizen

Bangladesh changes position but not the score in Transparency International Report September 28, 2007

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Bangladesh is in 7th position in Transparency International Corruption Perception Index (CPI) report for 2006-2007 with the score at 2. Last year Bangladesh was in 3rd position with the same score. Before that from 2001- 2005 Bangladesh had consecutively in no 1 position for 5 years.

In 1996, Bangladesh had score 1.2. It takes 10 years for Bangladesh to come to the score 2 where score 3 is considered for a country to be against corruption.

This year no 1 position is hold by Myamner and Somalia, Iraq in 2nd position, 3 rd is Haiti, Afganistan is in 5 th position..

Among the Saarc Countries Bangladesh is again at the bottom. Then Pakistan with 2.4, Nepal 2.5, SriLanka 3.2, India 3.5, Bhutan 5.0.

On the better end, at the top are Denmark, Finland, NeoZeland with 9.4 score, Singapure and Sweden 9.4 score, UK 8.4 and USA 7.2.

TIB Chairman Professor Mujaffar Ahmed while declaring the TI Index in a press conference strongly stressed that TIB has no role in deducting the score for Bangladesh. In the past, some ministers of the last regime tried to deplore the TI statement and were blaming the TIB for presenting partial facts of Bangladesh.

In CPI it is the score which is important and not the position. He explained that Bangladesh position is up with the same score of the last year as some of the countries had more downward trends. It is good that Bangladesh had avoided that downward trend. He appreciated the present steps against corruption taken by the Care Taker Government but said that it will take more time to be stabilized the state and perceived by the people.

This report is prepared by the Berlin –based Transparency International. The CPI of 2007 is prepared from the 14 surveys conducted by internationally renowned 10 independent bodies. For Bangladesh 7 references has have been used .

The main context of the used references are corruption and exchange of bribery, exploitation of Government position for personal and political benefit, Governance, tax collection, Collection of extra money for Government jobs including Judiciary, above all Government capability, success and failure in combating all such corruption.

We hope that Government anticorruptions measures would be successful and the trend it is creating will be continued in future and Bangladesh will come out with better score in future.

 

An ordinary citizen

Irregularities in Private medical colleges in Bangladesh August 19, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CORRUPTION, EDUCATION, HEALTH.
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‘Most of the private medical college in the country are in grave condition’ runs the report in Prothom Alo on 15th August 2007, a leading daily.

Starting in late 80’s there are 32 medical colleges and 8 private dental colleges in contrast to 14 Govt medical college and 1 govt dental college in Bangladesh.

Most of the private medical colleges has no adequate teaching facilities, not enough regular teachers, no proper laboratories, no hospital with proportionate patients, not adequate infrastructures and no transparency of accounts etc.

Though the rules dictate that every medical college should have atleast 250 bedded hospital at a proportion of 5 patients for a student. So for 50 students the college should have 250 bedded hospital and for 100 college should have 500 bedded hospital, but very few have got these facilities.

Again, though the private universities are not allowed to run the medical college but to our knowledge there is private medical college running under private university defying government ban and government is not settling it for long through legal procedures.

Many private medical colleges started without proper permission and many given permission on political ground. Many started with underhand negotiations.

The fees taken in the private medical colleges are not regulated and also the account is not transparent. Where many of the colleges are run by Trustee Board, but the money goes to the individual accounts. Many of the initiatives are absolutely business targeted and over all control of the past Governments were weak.

Where the admission in Government medical colleges is highly competitive, the private medical colleges open up the opportunities for the less meritorious students with the support of their parents’ affluence to study medicine in Bangladesh. With more private medical colleges the scale is becoming heavier on their side.

While in developed countries, the medical education is highly regulated and highly standardized, in Bangladesh it is compromised to the extreme.

And corruption played a important part to develop this compromise. This government should also enquire into this compromise and find out and punish the corrupted individuals who are destroying our medical education and our health system for their own personal gain.

An ordinary citizen

Post script:
20 September 2008
Government has barred 3 private medical college from taking admission on the ground that they have no adequate infrastructure and teachig stuff to fulfil the conditions.[...]

Related post in the blog:
Centralised admission test in private medical college – a positive step

Rangs building:’symbol of abuse of power’ demolished August 3, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CORRUPTION, GOVERNANCE, JUDICIARY.
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ranks.jpgRangs building is being demolished. Law Adviser termed the building as the symbol of abuse of power. Government won on appeal petition in the judgment of the Supreme Court where the building from the 7thfloor upto 22 nd floor (upper 16 floor) has been declared illegal.

Rajuk started to demolish the building from today. It will take 3-4 months for complete demolition of the building.

Governments were in fight with the Rangs owner from early nineties Despite the opposition of the Rajuk and Civil Aviation Ministry Rangs raised the building to 22 nd floor. Rajuk termed it illegal. But with an order from High court in 2000, it remain intact .Govt made appeal in the supreme count against the judgment. Now the judgment goes in favour of the Government.

Government will also acquire the land of the Rangs building and the area behind the bulding.

Government needs the land according to the master plan to develop a road to interconnect two highways to lessen the traffic in the capital.

Rangs Building is the monument of illegality.This is an example how the influential of Bangladesh ignore the rules of the land and ignore the orders of the governmental authorities. It shows how they influence the laws and ignore the courts. No political governments so far could do anything in this regard and the owners were so confident that they invested about 700 crore taka in constructing this. This confidence came from the political linkage they have developed over the years with the political parties and our legal system.

By demolishing the Building and acquiring the land and then preparing the planned road, not only the traffic will be eased up but it will also increase the confidence of the public on the Government and Government intension to do good for the country without fear or favour to anybody.

Bdoza

ACC, verdicts on graft cases and future challenges July 28, 2007

Posted by bdoza in BANGLADESH, CORRUPTION, GOVERNANCE, JUDICIARY, POLITICS.
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images1.jpgSpecial Tribunals have given verdicts on some graft cases put up by ACC (Anti-Corruption Commission) against the ministers, bureaucrats and others.

In these verdicts, Barrister Aminul Hoque, Ex BNP Minister along with other associates has given 31 years 6 months jail for patronizing militancy.

Mr. Ruhul Quddus Talukdar Dulu, Ex state Minister of BNP along with others has given jail for 8 years for looting and ransacking the houses, shops and bazaars.

Mr. Mohiuddin Khan Alamgir, a powerful bureaucrat who later turned to be the state Minister in AL regime has been given imprisonment for 3 years for concealing assets in his wealth statement and 10 years for amassing wealth disproportionate to his known source of income. The Judge examined the testimony of 37 prosecution witnesses, 7 defense witnesses and the records on 3 charges. 3 eminent citizens-Mr. Akbar Ali Khan, ex Secretary and ex-Adviser of the past Care Taker Government, Mr. Barakat, an Economist of Bangladesh and a DU teacher and an Economist from USA had given their testimony in favour of Mr. Alamgir. Mr Mohiuddin Khan Alamgir is also very much known to the public for his alleged involvement in anti Govt activites when he was the cabinet secretary before the fall of first BNP regime of Khaleda.

Earlier, the court jailed former State Ministers Mr. Mir Mohammad Nasiruddin and Mr. Amanullah Aman for 3 years for concealing assets and 10 years for amassing wealth beyond their known source of income. They are also fined and their properties and assets disproportionate to their known source of income were confiscated.

Barrister Aminul Hoque was tried in abstentia and he had no lawyer to plead for him and he will not get the opportunity to appeal in the higher court if he does not surrender by this time.

Lawyers of the other accused were not satisfied with the verdicts and had expressed their willingness to fight in the high court against these judgments.

With these verdicts a chill will pass through the spines of the other accused and also not yet arrested but corrupt politicians, bureaucrats and others.

But the questions are:

1) will the Government able to withstand the challenges in the high court because of appeal by the accused?

2) will the party activists try to throw a political challenge to the Government by creating a law and order situation in the country?

(an ordinary citizen)

Arrest of Hasina: Why combating corruption is difficult in Bangladesh? July 23, 2007

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Hasina was arrested on the charge of extortion few days back amid tight security. It is reported that Government has ample evidence against her involvement. About a dozen case are about to be framed against her.

Few weeks back when Hasina was abroad, Government was trying to keep her away from the country and trying to deal her more politically, then many quarters raised objection and asked the Government to deal with her more legally.

Now when the Government is taking legal steps, pressures from different angles and different forms are coming on the Government to release SK Hasina and withdraw the case.

Hasina herself and her protagonists are trying to give a political colour to the allegations against her. Hasina is saying that all the allegation against her are false. And CG arrested her to refrain her from election.

Her lawyers are saying that the case is false, the said incident occurred before the emergency rule, she could not be tried under the emergency rule and in special court. Sometime their tone, attitude and content of their statement is more political than legal. 565 lawyers of Chittagong bar also demanded her release.

Intellectuals are advocating her release in the media – their argument is that two minus theory will not work in Bangladesh, absence of SH and KZ will collapse the parties, country will be devoid of leadership, reform can not be imposed from outside, a flower developed in a laboratory will not grow outside, legal process should be transparent etc.

The Academicians in Universities also prefer to voice their protest. Both colours of teachers joined together after 16 years to demand the release of Sk Hasina and protest the harassnment of Khaleda Zia. But they are not asking for fair trail.

The editors and journalists also expressed their concern. Some of them also showing visible shift tin their outlook. The reporters are publishing news magnifying the reactions to the arrest of the Sk Hasina.

The party is also reacting strongly. AL Acting President said that there will be no reform or council until Sk Hasina is released. Recently he added that AL supports all the movements that support the release of Sk Hasina. He was referring to the strike call by the BCL in DU and other Institutions of the country.

So, the lawyers are questioning the legality of the arrest, the intellectuals are demanding the transparency, the loyalists are advocating for the release, the activists are demonstrating in the campus and the party is encouraging agitation of any form.

In the midst of these to overcome these and to prevent the country to go back to 1/11, the Government needs firm determination, transparency of the process and people support as was suggested by a roundtable discussion organized by the leading Daily Prothrom Alo and participated by the different authorities on the subject on 21 July 2007.

So far, people are with the government and they have not participated in any major agitation after the arrest of Sk Hasina.

 

Bdoza

Arrest of Hasina: after reactions (3) with few observations July 20, 2007

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3rd day passed..

Khaleda Zia in a statement demanded the immediate release of Sk Hasina and regretted failure of the administration to protect her dignity while being taken to court. She also added that people do not want to see chaos and disorder again which led to the promulgation of unexpected state of emergency. Many welcome the gesture. Some view it as the beginning of a new phase in our politics. Others nullify this and see this just as a token of sympathy which should have been there from the beginning but was absent conspicuously in our politics. Some see it as a preparation of the ground to combat the situation that is coming to Khaleda herself.

Tofael and Razzak two leaders of pro-reform group met with Zillur Rahman, acting President of AL and expressed their determination to remain united in this period of crisis. Zillur Rahman expressed later that the no reform or council will be held until Sk Hasina is released. Now AL has one demand ‘ release of Hasina’. No senior leader was there by his side when he was stating this. We are not sure how the reformist in the party react to this.

Sporadic protests are reported in few parts of the country. The people from Tungipara, the home place of Sk hasina observed Milad and fasting for the release of Sk hasina No major mass reaction observed in the country so far.

Notices have been sent to Hasina and Khaleda to submit their wealth accounts from the Anti-Corruption Commission. Hasiina cliaimed in a letter that the notice is full of error; the allegation was refuted by the anticorruption office.

50 lawyers sat together in the supreme court premises to discuss the ways to deal the cases coming on Sk Hasina. Some layers commented that Emergency Rule will not be applicable for this case as the incident mentioned occured before the emergerncy rule is imposed. However they didn’t make any comment on otherer cases of different political leaders who are under trail and given judgements for corruptions. 8 lawyers have filed petition to see Hasina to discuss the case.

 

On the otherhand, Barrister Moinul Hussain said that the Govt will not influence the course of the law like that of the past governments. Whatever happen that will be dictated by the law and the court.

The General Secretary of Dhaka University Teachers Association in a meeting condemned the arrest of Sk Hasina and demanded the resignation of Law Adviser, Barrister Moinul Hussain. Earlier 65 teachers of Chittagong University protested the arrest of Sk Hasina. The present Government is against the involvement of the teachers in the politics and is promulgating laws to prohibit student and teacher politics in the country.

In the meantime , Chief of Army Staff Lt Gen Moeen U Ahmed said in a gathering that a nation can not survive with the liability of corruption on its shoulder.

Bdoza

Arrest of Sk Hasina and immediate after reactions July 16, 2007

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1253_1.jpg

Sk Hasina, Ex Prime Minister of Bangladesh (1996-2001) and President of AL, one of the major political parties of Bangladesh, has been arrested in the early morning of today (16 July 2007) on the charge of corruption. Hundreds of police and paramilitary forces cordoned off her house since the late night in the midst of heavy rain.

No person was allowed to enter her house for hours, telephone connections were cut off, prison van came, also a protocol car, then she was taken out at 7-30 am. She was initially kept in the Central Jail and produced before the court where her bail appeal was rejected by the Judge and she was sent to specially arranged sub-jail.

The lawyers of Sk Hasina expressed their dissatisfaction the way the judgment was given.

Some Party activists were gathered outside the court room and raised slogans and some yelled out at the police.

Pro AL students at Dhaka University Campus brought out a procession in the Campus.

Some people also brought out a procession in the centre of the city near the Zero point and demanded the trial of SK Hasina. They even distributed sweets among the people.

Before arrest, Sk Hasina left an open letter to the people where she expressed her solidarity with the people and urged them to fight against the wrong.

Mr. Zillur Rahman, a senior member of the presidium was given the charge of the president of AL and said that they will fight against the arrest legally. Mrs. Sajeda expressed her grief on the arrest of Sk Hasina. Mrs.Matiya Chowdhury blasted the pro-reform group to create the opportunity for the Governnment to arrest her.

Mr. Abdur Razzak, one of pro-reform leader also expressed that the reason for the arrest of Sk hasina is trifle. But he mainly blasted Mrs. Motiya for blaming the senior pro-reform leaders. Pro-reform leaders also criticize to hand over the charge of the party president to Mr. Jllur Rahman, who is in very frail health. They expressed that the leadership should have been selected through discussion in the party.

In the meantime, Barrrister Moinul Islam told that Sk Hasina was arrested on specific allegation and charge sheet against her will be submitted soon. When asked he said that Begum Khaleda Zia may be arrested if specific allegation of corruption are found against her.

On the same day, away from the city in a meeting Chief Adviser strongly reiterated that no body is above the law and one of the principle of the present Government is to bring all corrupt people to justice.

The Consulate office of USA and UK expressed their concern on the arrest of Sk. Hasina and hope that all the steps against her would be taken under lawful authority.

The son of Sk. Hasina, Sajib Wajed from USA, in an interview said that the people will not accept the arrest of his mother.

Small processions were brought out in different districts. Few people were also arrested from the processions.

So far, people showed no major reactions as was expected by the party. The reason is that people dissociated themselves from the political parties because of the evidence of corruption by the leaders exposed over the past few months and the confidence of the people on the party and party leadership is at its minimum.

 

Bdoza

‘To end culture of corruption’ July 15, 2007

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To end culture of corruption Lt Gen Moeen U Ahmed presented 7 points proposals in a workshop on ‘Curbing Corruption in South East Asia’ organized by the Global Organization of Parliamentarians Against Corruption (GOPAC) in the Capital on 11 July 2007.

His seven points proposals are:

1) having a parliamentary Ombudsman

2) Creation of a high moral ground against corruption

3) Ensuring exemplary punishment for all guilty of corruption

4) Establishment of an independent and neutral judiciary

5) Socially boycotting the corrupt people

6) Reorganization of and a pay increase for the police force

7) Continuing regular drives against corruption and its agents

We have little to differ with him regarding the ways to combat the corruption in our country. His proposals are most comprehensive since the starting of the present CG.

We hope that a parliamentary Ombudsman will be appointed after the election when a new parliament is formed to look after the excesses of the parliament. Creation of high moral ground is a continuous process, should be exemplified by all political and administrative leaders.

But what this Government can do by itself is to punish all the grossly corrupt persons of all spheres and to establish an independent and neutral Judiciary. The CG is working on both these agenda. They have already taken steps in this regard.

But many people would not impressed with his example of Pakistan to curb corruption from our country as corruption of power is at its extreme in Pakistan where the democratic rights of the people is denied for long.

We better look at India as he said where media is playing a very strong role against corruption and where the politicians and Prime Ministers are accountable to the Judiciary.

We can also eaxamine Japan where many lagislative measures are taken to rectify the political system of the country and free it from corruprion.

Bdoza

Reform & leadership June 20, 2007

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Leaders of different parties become active for reform in their own parties. Initially the idea of reform was confined to few persons of the party. Both BNP and AL passed through the same stage. Now the talk of reform is vibrant in both the parties. Even the chiefs of the parties are talking about the reform and putting forward their own ideas.

The insistence of CG for reform of the parties is ultimately working. All could understand that our politics will not run the way we had run it. Without democracy in the party, democracy in the country cannot be established. Our parties were virtually one person show. The decision of the chief was the final. There was no discussion and no transparency of the decisions in the party. In consequence, our Governments of the past also of dictatorial nature, the decision of the Government depending on one person. The elections at five year interval become an exercise to dodge the people in the name of democracy. The party in power exploited the privilege to deprive the people and to earn money in every possible way. The corruption become rampant. It is found that top brasses of the party and Government were mainly responsible for the corruption.

Now. when the reform has started, how is it possible to reform the party with the corrupt leaders within the party? They will try to dictate the terms in their own way.

Government is lacking behind in arresting the corrupts, framing charges against them, arranging trail and giving judgments.

We want ‘no corrupt people in the leadership’, ‘complete reform of the parties’ and ‘a generation of new leadership’.

Bdoza

Campaign against corruption June 17, 2007

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Initially I was not that much enthusiastic about campaign against corruption. When ACC (Anti Corruption Commission) Chairman Lt General (Rt) Hasan Mashud Chowdhury voiced the need of campaign I was rather skeptical about need and success of the campaign. But he started his campaign and started to cover different districts and met different cross-section of people and exchanged views with them.

At one stage he was told that he should more concentrate on his office work than giving time in the field. But he continued the work though at a slower pace.

 

Recenly I have came across an article written by Dr. Kamal Hussain, our eminent lawyer in Daily ‘Prothom Alo’ on 16 June 2007 where he advocated for integration of common people in the ‘Campaign against Corruption’.

We know that corruption is widespread in our society. We are number one in corruption in the world for the last three years. Even with that assertion we didn’t astonished much.

But we were not prepared to hear the corruptions at the political high ups to such a magnitude that are disclosing now.

 

We are to blame the politicians who took the people’s mandate and took the oath by the constitution to uphold the interest of the country but exploited the privilege of the position and looted the country

 

These looters not only be barred from politics, they should also be given examplenary punishment for whom most people of our country are still under the poverty line.

People respect their leaders, not the criminals. People is behind the ‘Campaign against Corruption’.

Bdoza

Chittagong tragedy, landslide & protection of environment June 16, 2007

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The no of death rises to 126 in landslide in Chittagong. It is a man-made tragedy. Never before , so many people died of landslide in Chittagong or elsewhere in Bangladesh.

The Chief Adviser on his visit to see the victims asserted that Government will take long term measures to prevent the landslide and death after serving immediate need of the victims.

It is now obvious that the tragedy occurred due to unlawful flattening of the hills by the people who cares little for the law, people and environment.

Water logging in the city was compounded by the poor drainage system of the city. The drains and canals are narrowed by illegal establishments, filled with mud and sands obstructing the flow of water and not dredged for long time. The City Corporation itself constructed establishments over the drains ignoring the permission of CDA.

As the searching of the death is over, Goverment is taking measures to prevet the further tragedy. One of the measures is to shift the people who are under risk to the safe area.

We suggest that a ‘Geophysical Analysis’ should be made by the experts compromising Geologists, Environtologist, City planners etc and the extent of the damage should be calculated. Experts may also suggest ways to prevent the further damage and recovery, if any, from the damage already done.

A strong enquiry team is to be formed to look into matter to find the offenders who defying the law cause erosion of the environment and are responsible for this tragedy.

Only punishment to the criminals whoever he may be will protect hills and the environment in future.

It is to be remembered that hills are important to maintain ecological balance. If we fail to protect them, larger disester is waiting for us.

Bdoza

Post script: 26 June, 2007

The Enquiry Committee headed by the Divisional Commissioner of Chittagong submitted its report on the tragedy of Chittagong where 33 causes were identified and 50 recommendations were given.

Though the different Government and Autonomous bodies were blamed for their failures and public accesses were identified but the central reasons which actually influenced the other factors is the role of the influencials directly or indirectly in flattening the hills. We are not sure what steps CG would able to take against them.The future protection of the hills and environment will mainly depend on it.

Bdoza

18 August 2008

Landslide again took its toll in Chittagong and so far 11 dead bodies were found under the mud and many more may be found. It is more than over a year that the repitation of the same episode happened. This indicates not only ignorance of the people who took shelter there but also the negligence on the part of the responsible authorities. The acting Mayor of Chittagong City Corporation has formed an inquiry committee to look into the incident but who will inquire them? Will government formed a high power committee to inquire into the negligence of the responsible authorities?

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