Dhaka, July 22 (UNB)- Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Monday said that non-performing loans has come down in state-owned banks from December last.
“Similarly most of the banks have brought interest rate down to single digit. Others will implement it soon,” the minister said this at a meeting with Chairman and Managing Director (MD) of state run banks of the country at the Finance Ministry’s conference room in the secretariat.
Mustafa said that there have been a lot of talks about non-performing loans in media. “I said it won’t increase but media said it rose. Actually it did not increase. The review shows non-performing loan has decreased from 2018.”
“We will continue communication with the clients to strengthen the bank sector. But who took money from banks illegally; they would be brought under law. The law will continue at the pace of the law. Who did wrongdoing in the sector, they are now in jail with family,” he also said.
“We will sit in such meeting after three months to discuss about the banks sector’s situation,” he added.
According the minister, the percentage of default loans decreased to 25% in June of 2019 from 30.38 % in December of 2018 in Sonali Bank; similarly it came down to 35.18 % from 37.32 % in Janata Bank; 14.50 % from 20.25 % in Agrani Bank; 17 % from 17.92 % in Rupali Bank; 58.25% from 57.55 % in BASIC bank; 56.35 % from 65.54 % in Bangladesh Development Bank in the same period.
Bangladesh Bank Governor Fazle Kabir and Finance Division senior secretary Abdur Rouf Talukder also were present there.
Dhaka, 22nd July (UNB) – Written instructions to follow the Tobacco-Free Hospitality Sector Strategy will be sent to the associate institutions of Bangladesh Tourism Board, and all the institutions under the board will be completely smoke-free.
An orientation meeting on “Tobacco-free Hospitality Sector Strategy” was held on Monday, 22nd July in the Conference Room of the Bangladesh Tourism Board office, where the Additional Secretary and Chief Executive Officer of Bangladesh Tourism Board Dr Bhubon Chandra Biswas expressed his organization’s will to implement tobacco-free atmosphere in it.
Dhaka Ahsania Mission (DAM) and Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids (CTFK) jointly organized the meeting. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW)’s joint secretary Mr Md Khairul Alam Sheikh attended the meeting as a Special Guest. In his speech, he said the written guidelines prove that implementing the Tobacco-Free Hospitality Sector Strategy is indeed a very significant issue.
Assistant Director and Project Coordinator of DAM health sector Md. Mukhlesur Rahman presented the Tobacco-free Hospitality Sector Strategy Paper in the meeting.
High officials of Bangladesh Tourism Board, their associated institution representatives and anti-tobacco activists were also present at the meeting.
In order to control and reduce tobacco usage all around the world through comprehensive actions, Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) had been approved in 2003, and Bangladesh was the first country to sign it.
As a continuation of the efforts, the Government of Bangladesh enacted “Smoking and Tobacco Products Usage (Control) Act, 2005” and formulated necessary rules in 2006. In 2013, the Government amendment the law to make it more compliant to the FCTC and formulated the rules in 2015. The Law prohibits smoking in all the public places.
It has been observed in many instances that the smoking incidences (both active and secondhand) are relatively higher in the hospitality sector than what is in other public places. The public places in hospitality sector include hotels, motels, guesthouses, resorts, restaurants, bars etc. WHO conducted the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) in 2017, and according to the report, at least 50% population has been becoming exposed to secondhand smoking in restaurants.
In order to protect the non-smokers who are getting exposed to the harmful consequences of tobacco use while receiving the services from the hospitality sector- orientation on the strategy paper has become a necessity for Bangladesh Tourism Board.
Dhaka, Jul 22 (UNB) - Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on Monday imposed a travel ban on nine people including former Civil Surgeon of Sathkhira district Touhidur Rahman.
The Commission imposed on travel ban for their alleged involvement in embezzling almost Tk 17 crore in the name of purchasing equipment for Satkhira Sadar Hospital and Upazilla health complex.
Deputy director of ACC headquarters Jalaluddin filed the case with Khulna District Coordinated office of ACC on July 9 against 9 persons.
Storekeeper of Satkhira Civil Surgeon's Office Fazlul Haque, Accountant Anwar Hossain, owner of Bengal Scientific and Surgical Company Jahir Uddin Sarkar, Abdul Quddus, Ahsan Habib and Abdus Sattar from the Fulbari upazila of Dinajpur, Abu Bakr from Madaripur, assistant engineer H M Abdul Quddus are the others besides Touhidur
The accused were charged as they misappropriated the money by issuing false vouchers behind purchasing medical equipment and chemicals for Satkhira Medical College Hospital.
ACC sources said the letter was sent along with the special police superintendent of immigration (immigration) as ACC trusted sources said that the accused were trying to flee the country. So they need to be banned from traveling abroad.
According to the case details, the accused persons took the initiative to buy the equipment despite the demand letter misuse of power by mutual consent. Even, the concerned Institutes were not informed.
It also said that the accused withdrew an amount of TK 16 crore 61 lakh 31 thousand 827.
Meanwhile, the ACC also imposed a travel ban for the former chairman and two directors of People's Leasing and Financial Services Limited.
A letter has been signed by ACC assistant director Mohammad Sirajul Haque to the Special Branch of the Police in the afternoon from the headquarters of the ACC, the ACC Public Relations Office informed journalists.
Those who have received the travel ban are - former chairman of People's Leasing and Financial Services Limited M Moazzem Hossain and former directors Biswajit Kumar Roy and Md. Kabir Uddin.
They are accused in multiple cases.
Dhaka, July 22 (UNB) – Amid the growing incidents of mob attacks over child-lifting rumours, all the police units concerned have been directed to take necessary measures to stop the lynching.
The Police Headquarters (PHQ) issued the directives on Monday, two days after it urged all not to take the law into own hands by resorting to mass beating suspecting someone as a child-lifter.
It said an evil attempt is on to create an unstable situation in the country through killing people after spreading child-lifting rumours. “The act of killing in mass beating and creating an unstable situation in the country spreading rumours is a criminal offence,” it said.
In the fresh directives, the PHQ has asked for increasing surveillance in all educational institutions and slums, taking steps to make guardians aware holding views-exchange meetings with teachers, employees and governing bodies, ensuring escort by guardians during departure of students and installing CCTV cameras on campuses and in adjoin areas.
It has ordered taking necessary steps to raise public awareness against child-lifting rumours by distributing leaflets and posters, making announcements through loudspeakers and holding courtyard meetings with public representatives, civil society, community policing representatives and common people.
The PHQ has asked all units concerned/police supers to encourage people to hand over suspected child-lifters to law enforcers without taking the law into own hands and take steps to remove confusion over child-lifting through mosque imams.
It said instant actions will have to be taken against those who make confusing posts and comments, and spread rumours on social networking sites Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blogs and mobile phones.
All the unit chiefs have been asked to submit reports on the measures taken by them within three working days.
On Saturday, the police administration urged all not to take law into own hands by resorting to mass beating suspecting someone as a child-lifter.
The advice from the Police Headquarters came as a number of people were killed in mass beatings suspecting them to be child-lifters following rumours spread by a vested group that people’s heads are necessary as sacrifice for the construction of the Padma Bridge.
Decapitation of a minor boy in Netrakona town on Thursday amid rumours of ‘human sacrifice’ for the Padma Bridge has fuelled the mass beatings, killing at least four people and injuring 30 others across the country in the last three days.
Dhaka, July 22 (UNB) – The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) on Monday summoned Managing Director of Borak Real Estate (Pvt) Ltd Mohammad Noor Ali for interrogation over constructing a 30-storey building in Banani DNCC Market area after taking permission for a 14-storey one.
ACC Deputy Director Akhtar Hamid Bhuiyan sent a letter to Noor asking him to appear at the ACC headquarters at 10am on July 31, said the ACC Public Relations Office.
According to the national anti-graft body, Borak Real Estate took permission from Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha in 1998 for constructing a 14 storey building in the market area.
However, it constructed a 30-storey building violating the conditions.