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Dhaka Wednesday,  Mar 20, 2019

Petrobangla probe team submits report

EB Report

Board members of the Barapukuria Coal Mining Company Ltd (BCMCL) have found only 1,000-1,500 tonnes of coal in its yards, contrary to its demand that the company keeps a stock of 144,000 tonnes.

“Earlier, BCMCL officials stated that there could be one lakh tonne of coal under the yards. We’ve dug up the surface in front of all officials to verify their claim and found only 1,000-1,500 tonnes. So, we were misinformed by the officials,” said one of the board members.

But Petrobangla chairman Abul Mansur Mohammad Faizullah denied to make any comments on this issue.

The Petrobangla investigation team has submitted its report on the mysterious disappearance of a huge amount of coal from the BCMCL yards. The team was formed on Sunday. It visited the mine on Monday and submitted the report yesterday to state minister for energy Nasrul Hamid.

“I have received the report. But I’m yet to check it. So, I can’t make any comment at this movement,” said Nasrul Hamid.

“But it’s our credit that we’ve discovered the malpractice of BCMCL officials which has been going on from 2005,” he added.

The head of the investigation team, Kamrujjaman, also did not wish to divulge the contents of the report.

“We found huge irregularities at the BCMCL, which did not maintain any practical stock updates from 2005. There could be corruption in this regard, but we’ve not found any evidence of that so far. That’s why we’ve asked for more time to probe the matter,” said a member of the investigation team.

“We’ve found the lacklustre attitude of the management to be responsible for the disappearance of the large amount of coal. So, we haven’t mentioned any particular name in the report,” he added.

The discrepancies between the coal available at the yard as per the company’s record and the actual coal available was unearthed recently after a board member of the Bangladesh Power Development Board (PDB) visited the coal yard site.

Sources said the board members officially informed the Prime Minister’s Office about the matter.

Meanwhile, a case was filed against 19 BCMCL officials, including its former managing director Habib Uddin Ahmed, for the disappearnce of the coal.

Mohammad Fakhrul Islam, officer-in-charge of Parbatipur police station, confirmed this news.

The government yesterday issued a travel ban against four officials of the BCMCL. They are: BCMCL’s former managing director Habib Uddin Ahmed, general manager and Abul Kashem Pradhania, general manager (mine operation) Abu Taher Md Nur-Uz Zaman Chowdhury, and deputy general manager (store) Khaledul Islam.

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