Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) has arrested a close associate of the chairman of Regent Hospital in a case filed on charges of issuing fake Covid-19 test results and charging patients for the test.
Sujoy Sarker, deputy director (media) of Rab Headquarters, said Tariqul Islam alias Tareque Shibli was arrested in a drive conducted in Nakhalpara area of the capital around 11am.Important information was gleaned from him during primary quizzing, added Sujoy.
Meanwhile, a Dhaka virtual court on Wednesday placed seven officials and employees of Regent Group on a five-day remand each in the same case.
The accused are Regent Group Project Officer Rakibul Islam Sumon (39), its Human Resources Officer Amit Banik (39), health technologists Ahsan Habib Hasan (49) and Hatim Ali (25), administrative officer Ahsan Habib (45), driver Abdus Salam (25) and employee Abdur Rashid Khan Jewel (28).
The virtual court, however, rejected a bail petition of another 17-year-old accused and sent him to Tongi Children Correctional Centre as the investigation officer (IO) did not submit any remand prayer for him.
Earlier, Inspector Zulhas Mia of Rab-1 on Tuesday night filed the case with Uttara West Police Station against Regent Gtoup Chairman Md Shahed, its Managing Director Masud Parvez and 15 others.
Before the case was filed, the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) directed the authorities of Regent Hospital to shut down their Uttara branch after a mobile court found discrepancies and sealed off the head office and Uttara and Mirpur branches of the private hospital.The chairman, managing director and seven others are on the run while Rab arrested the eight staffers during their drive at Uttara branch on Monday.
RAB said the hospital authorities issued more than 10,000 Covid-19 test results. Around 4,200 samples were tested at different government labs, but they threw away the rest of the samples, prepared fake reports and handed them to people.
The hospital authorities took Tk3,500 for each test, meaning they embezzled more than Tk3.5 crore, despite having an agreement with the government on conducting tests and providing free treatment, RAB said.
RAB also said: “The licence of the hospital expired in 2014. The ICU of the hospital is not up to the mark. We found surgical items, which expired five to six months ago, at the hospital's medicine store.”