Volunteers bring out a body from the rubble of Rana Plaza after cutting a hole on the rooftop of the collapsed building. Photo: Star
The Anti-Corruption Commission today sued the Savar municipal mayor and 16 others for allowing the construction of Rana Plaza in violation of the National Building Code.
It however spared Sohel Rana, owner of the building, which collapsed more than a year ago killing over 1,135 people in Savar on the outskirts of the capital, from the charges.
The anti-graft watchdog said it did not implicate Rana, prime accused in the cases filed following the tragedy in April last year, in the new case as he was not owner of the land on which the building was constructed.
Rana also did not make any formal appeal seeking approval for constructing the building, said ACC Director Wing Commander Tahidul Islam.
The move follows an investigation by the ACC which has found the nine-storey Rana Plaza had no mandatory approval from the Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha (Rajuk).
ACC Deputy Commissioner Mafidul Islam filed the case with Savar Police Station bringing allegations that the accused in league constructed the building violating Bangladesh National Building Code.
According to the case statement, the Rana Plaza authorities initially obtained approval for a six-storey building but they ultimately made it a nine-story one.
Savar municipal authorities, including its engineers, gave the approval for the illegal construction, the statement said and added though the building was constructed as a shopping complex the municipal authorities gave permission for setting up garment factories on the top floors of it.
Rana's parents Abdul Khalek and Morjina Begum have been made accused as owners of the plot, according to ACC officials.
Apart from Savar Mayor Mohammad Refatullah, Associate Professor of Khulna University Abdur Razzak, the architect of the building, former chief executive officer of Savar Municipality Uttam Kumar Roy and Md Ali Khan, a ward councillor of Savar, were among the accused.