Vol. 5 Num 1012 Fri. April 06, 2007  
Front Page

Second Corrupt List of 50
ACC to launch probe against 34 suspects

Despite having various administrative limitations, the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) is going to start enquiry against 34 more high profile corruption suspects including BNP Senior Joint Secretary General and former prime minister Khaleda Zia's son Tarique Rahman.

The 34 are from the second government list of 50 high profile corruption suspects published in the media in the second week of March, said ACC Commissioner Habibur Rahman.

Meanwhile, the commission's activities are being hampered because of shortage of manpower. The ACC commissioner said they could not yet file cases against 11 persons from its first list of 50 corruption suspects due to the shortage of investigation officers.

However, Habib told journalists yesterday that despite the crisis the commission will assign 34 investigation officers (IO) to start enquiry against the 34 corruption suspects whose names he declined to reveal.

He also did not say clearly why 16 others on the list have been dropped and what criterion was followed in choosing the 34 for enquiry.

ACC sources said the commission finalised the 34 persons including Tarique Rahman.

ACC Secretary Delwar Hossain on February 18 officially published the names of 50 corruption suspects and directed them to submit their wealth statements within 72 hours. Of them 35 submitted their wealth statements within the ACC-stipulated time while a few others submitted theirs obtaining High Court order.

The ACC so far filed graft cases against 13 of the 35 corruption suspects as it found mismatches between their wealth statements and actual properties.

The ACC commissioner said, "We could have filed more cases by this time if we had required number of investigation officers."

According to the new ACC rules, after filing a graft case the commission will assign a new IO for investigation who will submit the charge sheet, he added.

The ACC absorbed more than 700 staffs from the erstwhile Bureau of Anti-Corruption including 85 first-class and second-class officers mainly responsible for enquiry and investigation.

In reply to a question, Habib said 13 officers are dealing with the investigation of 34 graft cases, 40 are engaged with the 40 taskforces of the National Coordination Committee while the rest are busy with other enquiries and official work.

"So, we need to increase the number of investigation officers," he said at a press briefing yesterday.

He also said the ACC wants to double the present number of its total staff and is preparing a new organogram for approval.

Last year the government approved the ACC organogram of 650 staffs but Habib said they want staffs more than 1200.

On March 8, the media published the second list of 50 more high profile corruption suspects.

Although no government organ including the ACC did officially claim the authority of the list, sources said the list was prepared by the National Coordination Committee headed by Communications Adviser Maj Gen (retd) MA Matin.

The 50 are Tarique Rahman, former health minister Khandakar Mosharraf Hossain, Chittagong Mayor ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury, Awami League (AL) Joint General Secretary Obaidul Quader, former minister and Jatiya Party (Monju) Chairman Anwar Hossain Monju, former minister Aminul Haque, AL Presidium Member Sheikh Helaluddin, former prime minister Sheikh Hasina's Assistant Private Secretary AFM Bahauddin Nasim, Rajshahi Mayor Mizanur Rahman Minu, former jute and textiles minister Shajahan Siraj, former commerce adviser and Juba Dal President Barkat Ullah Bulu, AL leader Kamal Ahmed Majumder, film star and BNP Ward Commissioner Manowar Hossain Dipjal, former state minister Ziaul Haq Zia, former APS to Hasina Rabiul Muqtadir, former communications minister Nazmul Huda's wife Sigma Huda, AL Religion Adviser Sk Md Abdullah, former Khulna mayor Kazi Aminul Haq, former minister Mirza Abbas' brother Mirza Khokon, former Chhatra League president Liakat Sikdar, Khaleda's nephew Shahrin Islam Tuhin, former MPs Habibul Islam Habib, Redwan Ahmed, Abdullah Md Taher, Rafiqul Anwar, Gazi Nazrul Islam (Jamaat), MAH Selim, Mahibur Rahman Manik (AL), Syed Abul Hossain, Shahidul Islam and Helaluzzaman Talukdar Lalu (BNP), BNP Pourasabha Chairman Manirul Haq Sakul, former minister Habibur Rahman Mollah, former AL leader Ali Reza Raju, former BNP pourasabha chairman GK Gaus, former AL pourasabha chairman from Teknaf Abdur Rahman Badi, Khaleda's brother Shamim Iskander, Orion Group Chairman Obaidul Karim, former MP and Partex Group Chairman Abul Hashem, Doctors Association of Bangladesh leader AZM Zahid Hossain, former secretary Ismail Zabiullah, proprietor of Hamim Group AK Azad, proprietor of Janakantha Globe Group Atikullah Khan Masud, owner of Uttara Group Giridhari Lal Modi, former chief conservator of forests Munshi Anwarul Islam, former National Board of Revenue member ATM Sarwar Hossain, former additional IGP Shahidullah Khan, chief engineer of Public Works Department AFM Manzurul Islam, Public Service Commission member Mahfuzur Rahman, and Desa workers' union president Kazi Mosharraf Hossain.

Sources said the National Coordination Committee taskforces have been working to find out evidence of corruption of the 34.

"The taskforces initiated enquiry about the corruption suspects on the second list of 50 with the help of intelligence agencies earlier; now the investigation officers from the commission will be included in the taskforces," said a source.

The ACC commissioner said after completion of the enquiry the ACC will ask the 34 corruption suspects to submit their wealth statements.