Vol. 4 Num 55 Mon. July 21, 2003  
Front Page

Three WASA engineers clipped for graft
Mannan Bhuiyan convinced of massive pilferage

The local government, rural development and cooperatives ministry yesterday suspended three engineers of Dhaka Water and Sewerage Authority (WASA) for corruption and neglect of duty.

A review meeting of the WASA activities at the ministry with Minister Abdul Mannan Bhuiyan in the chair also directed the authorities concerned to proceed files of others engaged in corruption and neglect of duty.

Bhuiyan said he was fully convinced of massive corruption and pilferage in the WASA and expressed his firm determination to root out the ills.

The suspended officials are Executive Engineer (Zone-2) Hasan Ali, Sub-Divisional Engineer Wahid Murad and Sub-Assistant Engineer Sharif Hossain. Of them, Hasan Ali was made officer on special duty on June 14.

Ministry sources said the engineers did not abide by the directives made at a similar meeting on June 14.

"None will be spared, if they are engaged in corruption and negligence of duty," Bhuiyan told the meeting.

LGRD State Minister Ziaul Haq Zia and Secretary of the same ministry AYBI Siddiqi and high officials of the ministry and WASA were also present.

The meeting was told that revenue income of the WASA increased by 19 per cent after the formation of six taskforces on June 14.

Eight new deep tubewells will be set up in different parts of Dhaka city at a cost of Tk 2.5 crore and 10 old deep tubewells will be repaired and reinstalled at Tk 3 crore, meeting sources said.

They said 10 kilometres of new water lines would be installed and 90 km old and ruptured pipelines would be reinstalled at a cost of Tk 1.5 crore.

Bhuiyan was surprised to know that there were only 2.5 lakh WASA subscribers in Dhaka, home to about one crore people.

He asked the officials to take legal action against those using water illegally and demanded the number of illegal lines. But the officials failed to give him any figure.

The minister directed the WASA to clean all of its water tanks immediately to supply the townspeople with safe water and keep its water transport on stand-by to ensure quick supply to crisis-hit areas.

The WASA systems loss, stemming largely from ruptured supply lines and widespread pilferage, currently stands at about 49 per cent.

Bhuiyan told the officials that the government decided to privatise the total bill collection process and handed over the responsibility to the private sector in Zone-3.

Zone-3 covers parts of Kalabagan, Dhanmondi, Salimullah Road, Noorjahan Road, Tajmahal Road, Kathal Bagan, Indira Road and Lalmatia.