Thursday, 9 December, 2021

Zahangir suspended

Three-member panel formed to carry out duties of GCC mayor

  • Staff Correspondent
  • 26 November, 2021 12:00 AM
  • Print news
Zahangir suspended

The government has suspended Gazipur City Corporation (GCC) Mayor Mohammad Zahangir Alam from his post on charges of abuse of power, corruption and some other irregularities.

Zahangir’s suspension from the mayoral post came on Thursday, a few days after he was expelled from the ruling Awami League.

Local Government and Rural Development Minister Tazul Islam said action has been taken against Zahangir as many allegations were lodged against the GCC mayor.

“A three-member probe committee will look into the matter. For the sake of proper investigation against Zahangir, he has temporarily been suspended as per the city corporation law,” he told reporters.

The minister said if any allegation against the mayor is taken into cognisance for investigation, there is a rule to suspend the mayor. “That’s why the GCC mayor has been suspended.

To this effect, the LGRD Ministry issued a notification.

Zahangir is facing many allegations of abuse of power, embezzlement of government resources, land grabbing, activities against public interests and some other irregularities.

All the allegations are punishable under the Section 13 (1) (D) of the City Corporation Act, 2009,

the notification said.

In this regard, Zahangir has been suspended under the Section 12 (1) of the law, it added.

On November 19, Awami League expelled Zahangir from the general secretary post of the party’s Gazipur city unit on charges of making derogatory comments on Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and martyred freedom fighters.

Zahangir also lost his primary membership of the party.

The government formed a three-member panel to carry out duties of the mayor, said a notification signed by Deputy Secretary Zahirul Islam.

They are Asadur Rahman Kiron of Ward 43, Abdul Alim Molla of 52 and Ayesha Akter of Reserved Ward 10.

According to section 12 (2) of the City Corporation Law, 2009, the suspended mayor has to hand over the charge to the senior member of the panel mayor.

Section 20 (1) of the local government law mentions that a panel of mayor must be formed within 30 days after the first meeting of the newly elected city corporation board.     Despite the provision, the suspended mayor did not form it even after three years. 

Besides this, the ministry has also formed a three-member probe body led by Additional Secretary Mustakim Billah Faruqui to look into the allegations against Zahangir.

In another development, Awami League has made Ataullah Mandal new acting general secretary of the party’s Gazipur metropolitan unit.

The decision was taken as the party post became vacant following the expulsion of previous general secretary and city mayor Zahangir, said a press release.

On the same day, a meeting of the Awami League Central Working Committee chaired by AL President and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina instructed the authorities concerned to take legal action against Zahangir.

Later, the LGRD minister hinted at taking action against Zahangir as per the local government law.

Earlier on September 21, Zahangir made some derogatory comments on Bangabandhu and the number of martyrs in the War of Liberation in 1971 at a programme and its video went viral.

Following the incident, Awami League issued a show-cause notice to the GCC mayor, asking him to submit his explanation within 15 days.

In his reply to the show-cause notice, Zahangir expressed sorry for violating the discipline and begged mercy.