Three days after the appointment of senior lawyer AM Amin Uddin as the new attorney general for the state, two additional attorney generals -- Murad Reza and Momtaz Uddin Fakir -- yesterday resigned without citing any specific reasons.
Their resignation was the hot topic among Supreme Court lawyers yesterday.
Requesting anonymity, a former deputy attorney general, said both of them were disappointed by not getting the attorney general job.
In their resignation letters, sent to the president through the law ministry yesterday morning, they mentioned "personal difficulties" for stepping down.
Now there is only one additional attorney general.
Some lawyers said Amin Uddin was almost contemporary to Murad and Momtaz, and both of them felt overlooked. The two had expectations to be attorney general following the demise of Mahbubey Alam.
The names of several lawyers, including Murad, Momtaz, current Additional Attorney General SM Munir, Ajmalul Hossain QC and Munsurul Hoque Chowdhury, had been in discussion for the top law officer post, a lawyer said.
Ajmalul and Munsurul were not young, the lawyer said.
Lawyer AM Mahbub Uddin Khokon, who has been elected secretary of the Supreme Court Bar Association for seven times consecutively, told this correspondent that Murad and Momtaz stepped down perhaps they felt they could not adjust to new Attorney General AM Amin Uddin and would not feel comfortable to work with him.
The president appoints the attorney general as per the prime minister's advice.
"The president appoints a person in the post who has the quality to become a judge of the Supreme Court under the constitution of the country," Mahbub added.
Contacted, Law Minister Anisul Huq said, "I know that two additional attorney generals have resigned. I don't know the reasons for which they have stepped down.
"These posts will not remain vacant. New additional attorney generals must be appointed now."
Replying to a query, he said the activities of the attorney general's office would not be hampered following the additional attorney generals' resignations.
"Murad Reza and Momtaz Uddin Fakir had been discharging their responsibilities as additional attorney generals for a long period of time. They have done good work. I thank them. The newly appointed attorney general is a senior lawyer and he is very competent and experienced. I think the functions of the attorney general's office will not be hampered due to the resignations of Murad Reza and Momtaz Uddin Fakir as additional attorney generals," the minister said.
Murad, who had been serving as additional attorney general since 2009, told The Daily Star that he resigned as he wished to do so.
He refused to say more.
Momtaz, who was appointed an additional attorney general in 2010, told this correspondent that he decided much earlier to resign from his post as he has some personal issues.
Responding to a query, Momtaz said there was no relation between his resignation and Amin Uddin's appointment as the attorney general.
On October 8, President Md Abdul Hamid appointed senior lawyer and Supreme Court Bar Association President AM Amin Uddin as the country's 14th attorney general.
The post felt vacant after Attorney General Mahbubey Alam passed away on September 27.
For moving cases before the Supreme Court, the state now has an attorney general, an additional attorney general, and 67 deputy attorney generals and 151 assistant attorney generals.
Meanwhile, newly appointed Attorney General Amin Uddin talked to reporters at his office yesterday afternoon and sought their assistance in stamping out corruption from the court arena.
"If I receive information from the media about corruption and irregularities, I will take necessary steps to remove them," he said.
Amin Uddin said he would try to uphold the dignity of the attorney general's office established by his predecessor Mahbubey Alam.
Replying to a query, the new attorney general said he does not know why Murad and Momtaz resigned.
"I have not yet talked to them. They might have personal issues. Appointment and resignation in the attorney general's office are normal phenomena," Amin Uddin said.
He said reducing the backlog of pending cases is the most challenging job and he will take necessary steps to this effect.
Answering another question, Amin Uddin said a proposal for amending the existing law enhancing punishment for rape from life imprisonment to death sentence could be placed before the cabinet today.
If the law is amended, the offenders will think before committing the crime of rape and gradually the incidents of rape will reduce, he opined.