FR Tower Extention: Rupayan chief, 15 Rajuk officials responsible | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, November 26, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:29 AM, November 26, 2020

FR Tower Extention: Rupayan chief, 15 Rajuk officials responsible

ACC probe finds

Rupayan Housing Chairman Liakat Ali Khan Mukul and 15 former and current Rajuk officials are among those responsible for the illegal vertical extension of FR Tower in Banani, according to investigators.

In its 15-month probe, the the Anti-Corruption Commission also found lessee of the tower Syed Md Hossain Imam Faruk and Managing Director of Quasem Industries Tasvir Ul Islam involved in the corruption.

On June 25, 2019, months after a fire broke out at FR Tower leaving 25 dead and 73 others injured, ACC Deputy Director Abu Bakkar Siddiqui filed a case. He was later appointed to investigate the case.

He has recently submitted the investigation report, which was approved by ACC yesterday.

"The ACC will soon submit the charge sheet before the court," said ACC Director Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya.

The fire broke out on March 27, 2019.

In the investigation, the ACC found that although authorities had legally obtained permission for a 15-storey building, they made the FR Tower a 23-storey one over time. The FR Tower had no fire alarm, had narrow exit points and staircases, blocked fire exits and other issues. As a result, the casualties peaked, ACC found.

Faruque got the land on lease in 1989 from the now-defunct Dhaka Improvement Trust. He applied to Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha for permission to construct a 15-storey building on the land in 1990 and got approval the same year.

In 1996, permission was illegally given for extending the 15-storey building to an 18-storey one. The building was later extended to the 23rd floor without any official clearance from Rajuk.

Rajuk officers helped create fake designs of the building and get approval for the illegal extension, the investigation officer found.

Rajuk officers who are found to be involved in the illegal extension are: Assistant Authorised Officer Nazrul Islam, Director Shamsul Alam, Deputy Director Muhammad Shawkat Ali, clerks Muhammd Mujibur Rahman Molla, Md Shafiullah and Saiful Alam, computer operator Md Enamul Haque, building inspectors Imrul Kabir, Shawkat Ali, former director Abdullah-Al-Baki, former authorized officer Shafiqul Islam, former assistant director Shah Md Sadrul Alam, former superintendents Jahanara Begum and Mofazzal Hossain, and former inspector Meheduzzaman.


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