Irregularities galore in Ashrayan Project

Five govt officials made OSD

Staff Correspondent

7 July, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Irregularities have been found against some government officials, including UNOs, and Union Parishad chairmen, in Ashrayan Project, a special project of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for homeless people.

Sources said there are allegations of irregularities, including violation of construction specifications, inundation of the project areas by light rain and handing over of houses to land owners.

Besides this, substandard materials have been used for construction work in the project, cracks have been found on the walls, pillars were broken and walls were collapsed.

Stern action would be taken against some 180 persons, including a dozen UP chairmen and administration officials, for their alleged involvement in irregularities in Ashrayan Project marking the Mujib Year, birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the sources say.

Owing to the fact, the ministry made five admin officials, including Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO), assistant commissioner (land), officers on special duty (OSD) on charges of irregularities in the Ashrayan Project, a dream project of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

In this regard, separate gazette notifications have been issued over the last couple of days.

Departmental cases have been filed against two admin officials and process is underway to file cases against others officials, while inquiry committees led by deputy commissioner (DC) of respective districts have been formed, public administration ministry sources said.

In the meantime, Prime Minister’s Office has found irregularities and negligence in construction of houses for homeless people during a recent visit of a delegation.

Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary Dr Ahmad Kaikaus told the media that no irregularities, graft and negligence will be accepted over the construction of Ashrayan Project as it is a gift of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to homeless people, marking Mujib Year. Earlier, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina pledged that no one will remain homeless in the country.

The ministry sources said five officials are former UNO of Kazipur in Sirajganj, deputy secretary Shafiqul Islam, UNO of Amtali in Barguna, Md Asaduzzaman, former UNO of Sherpur in Bogura, Liakat Ali Sheikh (current additional district magistrate), former UNO of Munshiganj Sadar Upazila, Rubayet Hayat, and Munshiganj sadar assistant commissioner (land) Sheikh Mejbah-ul-Saberin.

Meanwhile, departmental cases have been lodged against two officials, including former Sirajganj UNO Shafiqul Islam.

Apart from these, allegations have been raised in some 29 other upazilas, including Adamdighi in Bogura, Kalkini in Madaripur, Debidwar in Cumilla, Lalmonirhat Sadar, Mohalchori in Khagrachori Sripur in Gazipur, Mohonganj and Khaliajuri in Netrokona, Katiadi in Kishoreganj, Tarash in Sirajganj, Islampur in Jamalpur, Sarail in Brahmanbaria, Mymensingh Sadar, Chunarughat and Nabiganj in Habiganj, Phulbari in Dinajpur, Sathia in Pabna, Lalmohon in Bhola, Ghior in Manikganj, Natore Sadar, Roumari in Kurigram, Barishal Sadar and Haripur in Thakurgaon.

Sources say some 36 UP chairmen may face the music for their involvement in irregularities in the construction work.

The government built a total of 118,380 houses for the homeless as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s Mujib Year gift.

About 70,000 landless and homeless families across the country got their houses along with pieces of land under the project in January.

Following the prime minister’s announcement that no one will remain homeless in the Mujib Year, the government made lists of over 885,000 homeless families and took the steps to change their lives.