July 17, 2024

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) sent out letters to Bangladesh Bank and Islami Bank Bangladesh seeking information on a Tk 3,300 crore loan scam. The ACC’s request, its second in this matter, called for the banks to supply the necessary reports and documents.

The ACC’s inquiry, overseen by their Deputy Director Yasir Arafat, is working to determine how Tk 3,300 crore was managed to be embezzled under the guise of loans for three bogus companies. ACC officials requested that the relevant data be provided within a week.

Information has been requested from the Islami Bank’s Chaktai, Khatunganj, and Jubilee Road branches in Chattogram.

On Monday, ACC Secretary Khorsheda Yasmeean stated that the illicit removal of around Tk 3,300 crore from the Islami Bank’s Chittagong branch had been brought to ACC’s attention. She explained that a three-member investigative group had been established and had sent out letters to responsible parties for the investigation.

The ACC’s correspondence relayed that they were looking into allegations against Golam Kibria Chowdhury, the owner of United Super Traders, for alleged misappropriation of 3,300 crore taka under the disguise of a loan from Islami Bank.

The ACC sought information from the Islami Bank’s Gulshan Corporate Branch in Dhaka, Rajshahi and New Market Branch in Rajshahi, and Pabna Branch regarding 11 companies of Nabil Group.

The companies of Nabil Group encompass Nabil Naba Foods Limited, Nabil Cold Storage, Nabil Feed Mills Limited, Nabil Auto Rice Mills, Nabil Auto Flower Mills, Shimul Enterprises, Naba Agro Trade, Anwara Trade International, Naba Pharma, Nabil Green Crops and International Product Palace.

Bangladesh Bank had been given a first notification by the ACC in November 2023. Their reply in January stated they were still inspecting the noted organizations and would produce a report when the assessment ended.

Bangladesh Bank’s inspection in the previous year showed loans equalling Tk 3,300 crore were handed out to Century Food Products, United Super Traders, and Murad Enterprises via three branches of the Islami Bank. The curious aspect was that these organizations were not found at the addresses listed in the loan documentation. Moreover, new debts were recorded in the names of these companies and used to adjust earlier liabilities.

FAQs

What is the Tk 3,300 crore loan scandal about?

In essence, the scandal revolves around a mammoth sum of Tk 3,300 crore that was embezzled in the name of loans to three non-existent companies. This major scam caught the attention of authorities when the alleged companies were not found at their stated addresses.

Who is leading the investigation into the apparent scam?

The investigation is currently spearheaded by the ACC, with their Deputy Director Yasir Arafat playing a crucial role. A special three-member team has been formed to dig deeper into this serious matter.

What does the ACC expect from Bangladesh Bank and Islami Bank in regard to the situation?

The ACC desires that both banks proffer comprehensive reports and pertinent documents related to the loans. The ACC also wishes for both banks to supply these documents within seven days after request. These resources would lend weight to ACC’s ongoing investigation into the scandal.