Finger pointed at Mainul | The Daily Star
11:00 PM, August 03, 2009 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:00 PM, August 03, 2009

Finger pointed at Mainul

JS body blames him for Rangs deaths, charges with graft to favour family; he bins allegations


Thirteen workers were killed during the demolition of the 22-storey Rangs Bhaban in December 2008.
Mainul Hosein(inset). Photo: File

A parliamentary probe body yesterday blamed former caretaker government adviser Mainul Hosein for the death of 13 labourers during demolition of the 22-storey Rangs Bhaban in the capital.
The sub-committee under the standing committee on the housing and public works ministry also claimed to have evidence of abuse of power and graft by the former adviser and his family.
It said Mainul's arbitrary decision as adviser in charge of the ministry led to the Rangs building disaster on December 8, 2007, and cost the workers their life.
It said it has minutes of the ministry's meetings to bear out the assertion.
“Ship-breaking workers were employed to pull down the Rangs building, and the decision was clearly a recipe for disaster,” Nasrul Hamid, chief of the sub-committee, told a press briefing at the Jatiya Sangsad Bhaban.
Commissioned to investigate corruption in the housing and public works departments over the last seven years, the five-member sub-committee will now recommend legal measures against Mainul.
Meanwhile, Mainul Hosein, also former law adviser, has refuted the allegations that include irregularities in allocation of plots.
In a statement issued last night, he said no-one was given plots during his one-year stint as adviser to the last caretaker government.
He said similar allegations were raised before, but he never got any answer as to who among his family was allotted plots.
"It is to be seen who is being faulted on whose wrongs," he wrote on the pad of Ittefaq Group of Publications Ltd.
Earlier in the afternoon, Nasrul Hamid told reporters that the sub-committee has received complaints against Mainul from individuals and the ministries alike.
He said they have allegations that the former adviser's son Arshad Hosein forcibly occupies a house at Gulshan-1. He set up a steak house there during the caretaker government rule, disregarding the owner's objections.
Due to Mainul's influence, Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakhkha (Rajuk) could not force him to vacate the house.
Hamid, ruling Awami League lawmaker from Keraniganj, said the probe body has also gathered that Mainul's son constructed a high-rise in the city's Kakrail area, violating Rajuk's building code.
He said the former adviser also meddled in allocation of 158 plots under Khulna Development Authority.
Besides, he abused his authority in allocation of 459 plots under Kushtia Housing Authority.
He pulled strings to get a plot for a private university in the city's Mirpur area.
Hamid said the sub-committee is also probing alleged corruption in allocation of 25 bighas of land in Tejgaon industrial area for media outlets loyal to BNP and allies.
A hospital was planned to be built on that land. In 1996, the then prime minister Sheikh Hasina laid foundation of the hospital.
He said the parliamentary standing committee on the housing ministry has already recommended that the allotment be cancelled.
Sub-committee members Asaduzzaman Khan and Enamul Haque were present at the briefing.
The parliamentary standing committee on the housing and public works ministry formed the sub-committee on June 25.

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