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18 June, 2019 00:00 00 AM

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DG of Islamic Foundation ignores govt show cause

Special Correspondent, Dhaka

The director general of Islamic Foundation Bangladesh (IFA), Samim Mohammad Afzal, has not replied to a show-cause notice from the religious affairs ministry for allegedly trying to hide some incriminating documents against him. Samim, who has been serving as the IFA DG for around 10 years on a contractual basis, has also not been attending office for the past one week after receiving the notice, sources said.

On June 14, Afzal was allegedly trying to hide some important files in order to conceal evidence of his misdeeds in IFA.

But, some IFA officials caught him red handed and informed the ministry.

Given the current situation, the ministry has asked IFA officials not to give any files to the DG. The ministry is also planning to cancel his contract, sources said, adding that a proposal to this effect might be sent to the Prime Minister for approval.

Earlier on June 10, Samim was served a show-cause notice for his “illegal, premeditated and imperious activities and misuse of power” in running the institution tasked with regulating Islamic activities in the country. He was given seven working days to reply to the notice.

The religious affairs ministry issued the notice on Monday against the DG on behalf of the IFA board of governors. The IFA board’s governor, Siraj Uddin Ahmed, signed the notice.

According to IFA officials, Shamim intended to submit his resignation after receiving the notice and called IFA secretary to receive the resignation letter. But, before doing so, he tried to hide some important documents. But some IFA staff caught him in the act and confined him in his office, source said.

Apprised of the matter, senior officials from the ministry accompanied by police went to the IFA office and recused the DG. After being released from captivity, Samim changed his mind and refused to resign, sources said.

Yesterday, the secretary of the religious affairs ministry, Md Anisur Rahman, told The Independent that they were facing an embarrassing situation over the issue.

“There are thousands of allegations of illegal, premeditated and imperious activities and misuse of power against Samim. To know his stance on the allegations, he was sent a notice and asked to reply within seven days. He is yet to reply,” Rahman said, adding that the DG had intended to resign from office.

“But, he doesn’t want to resign after facing resistance for hiding documents,” he said. According to IFA officials, there are hundreds of allegations of corruption, irregularities in recruiting staff, embezzlement of public funds and misuse of power against the DG. The allegations were submitted to the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) and higher authorities including the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).

Despite the allegations, the authorities have not yet taken any action against the DG. Instead, after completion of his regular service as a judge, he was given contractual appointment to the office for the fourth time. His last two-year contract will end this December.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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