Published:  01:55 AM, 13 August 2017

60 days to probe into BASIC Bank loan scam

The High Court has directed the Anti-Corrup-tion Commission or ACC to complete its probe into a loan scam case within 60 days after bringing the former chairman and the board of directors of BASIC Bank to book. Abdul Hye Bachchu was the chairman of the bank when Tk 400 million loan was approved from the bank's Shantinagar branch in November 2010.

Justice M Enayetur Rahim and Justice Shahidul Karim passed the order on Wednesday after hearing a petition filed by the ACC against a lower  court bail to a suspect, reports

ACC lawyer Mamun Mahbub told that the BASIC Bank board and chairman had ignored their credit committee's recommendation and approved Tk 400 million loans without proper documents to Syed Traders Managing Partner Syed Mahbubul Gani in 2010.

He said the ACC filed the loan scam case with Paltan Police Station on Sep 23, 2015, against nine people including Gani and Rupsha Surveyors Company's chief surveyor Shahjahan Ali.

Ali was arrested in August last year. He secured bail from the Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge's Court the next month, which was later challenged by the ACC in High Court.

Upholding Ali's bail on Wednesday, the High Court, however, has expressed dissatisfaction over the fact that the investigation did not end in two years, Mahbub said. "Also, those who approved the loan were not accused in the case."

"That's why the court has ordered to finish the investigation within 60 days while bringing the former BASIC Bank chairman and the board of directors to book." Around Tk 45 billion was withdrawn as loans from the state-run bank's Dilkusha, Gulshan and Shantinagar branches between 2009 and 2012, when Bachchu was the chairman.

The ACC prosecuted 26 officers of the bank and 130 others in 56 cases filed with three police stations in Dhaka in September 2015 on charges of helping several businesses secure the loans through forgery.

Neither Bachchu nor any member of the bank's board was named in the cases because, according to the ACC, they were not involved in the scam. But, in March, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said Bangladesh Bank has found Bachchu's involvement with a loan scam.

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