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Farmers Bank ex-MD, 6 others sued for graft

29 Oct,2018

BDchronicle:

Anti-Corruption Commission on Sunday filed a case against seven people, including six high officials of Farmers Bank, for embezzling Tk 30 crore from the bank.

ACC deputy director M Shamsul Alam filed the case with Gulshan Police Station, said ACC public relations officer Pranab Kumar Bhattacharjee.
The accused are Layla Bansprati Products Limited managing director Shahabuddin Alam and its chairman Yeasmin Alam, former Farmers Bank Ltd chairman of audit committee Mahbubul Haque Chisty, former managing director and CEO Chowdhury Istiaque Ahmed, former additional director of the bank AMM Shamim, senior vice-president Ziauddin Ahmed and former manager and SVP of Gulshan corporate branch Delowar Hossain.
The ACC said that it found massive irregularities in various forms starting with withdrawal of loan to siphoning off the money.
According to the first information report, Layla Bansprati Products submitted an application to Farmers Bank’s Gulshan branch seeking Tk 70 crore as loan in April 2015 while the company opened its account with the bank in May 2015.
In same month, the branch forwarded the application to its head office with the branch’s consent, the FIR said.
The proposal was rejected by an emergency board meeting in June 2015 and a month later the board approved Tk 30 crore without scrutinising necessary documents, it said.
Later, the branch officials give the loan in three instalments and the client swindled the amounts immediately, the FIR said.
It said that the branch officials also did not follow-up the loan which helped the client to embezzle the money.
On April 3, 2018, the ACC imposed a ban on foreign travel by 17 officials of the crisis-ridden Farmers Bank Ltd, including its former managing director and chief executive officer AKM Shameem, along with their families.
The commission took the move as part of its ongoing inquiry into money laundering and accumulation of illegal wealth by the officials after crores of taka was embezzled from different branches of the bank.
On November 28, 2017, former home minister of the Awami League government Muhiuddin Khan Alamgir resigned as chairman of the board of directors and executive committee of the bank.
At the same time, the bank’s audit committee chairman Mahbubul Haque Chisty also resigned.
The resignation came amid a liquidity crisis and a fall in the financial 
indices of the bank that according to a Bangladesh Bank report posed serious threat to the overall baking sector.
In February 2013, Farmers Bank, a new generation bank, awarded licence in 2013 allegedly on 
political consideration, sought bail-out fund of Tk 1,100 crore to overcome the crisis caused by aggressive banking, loan irregularities, gross mismanagement and undue interference by the previous board of directors.
The government has planned to inject Tk 715 crore into the scam-hit Farmers Bank despite criticism that the proposed bailout fund will set a bad precedence in the country’s banking history.

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