July 23, 2024, 12:05 pm

TIB raises alarms over corruption allegations against Benazir

  • Update Time : Tuesday, June 4, 2024
  • 19 Time View
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TDS DESK:

Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) raised serious alarms over revelations surrounding former IGP Benazir Ahmed, who allegedly amassed huge illegal wealth through the misuse of the state-granted authority.

The anti-corruption organization also called for taking decisive legal action against him and those who aided and shielded him.

It has noted that the unchecked misuse of power by individuals in high-ranking positions is not only alarming but also reminiscent of creating monster-like figures such as Benazir, ultimately undermining the state’s accountability mechanisms.

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In a press release issued recently, the anti-corruption watchdog also called for decisive legal action against those aiding and shielding such abuses of power.

The TIB demanded fair compensation for individuals who were coerced by the former inspector general of police (IGP) into selling their land.

Information on wealth and property accumulation by the former police chief is surfacing regularly. Media has reported that most of this wealth and property were grabbed by the former police chief by using fear tactics, or he had taken the real owners hostage to force them to sell their land.

In many cases, the owners of the land were minorities. To carry this out, the former police chief arbitrarily employed personnel from his own agency and other state-run agencies.

Terming such abuse of power by the top-ranking officer of a law enforcement agency as outrageous, TIB Executive Director Dr Iftekharuzzaman said, “Allegations that the properties were forcibly acquired through intimidation using the former IGP’s name and his family members and the collusion of law enforcement and government agency personnel in carrying out these tasks is truly horrific.”

“Any chance of the victims getting justice for his crimes has also been forcefully blocked. Under such circumstances, there’s no alternative to ensuring exemplary punishment for the main accused and the colluders, and to compensate those who were forced to sell their properties out of fear of the former police chief,” he said.

The allegations of wealth and property accumulation through corruption against the former IGP are currently under investigation, with new information about his wealth surfacing regularly.

The TIB executive director raised questions about how Benazir Ahmed and his family were able to flee the country amid such serious allegations.

“Media reports indicate that the former police chief, accused of corruption, fled the country after withdrawing a substantial amount of money from the banks. Given these circumstances, it’s truly surprising that someone as controversial as him could leave without anyone noticing. It raises doubts about whether his departure involved collusion, or if any bank official assisted in withdrawing and laundering the funds abroad, or if the investigations against him are superficial,” he said.

“It’s evident that a certain faction within the power structure has protected him before and continues to do so. Justice can’t be served solely by prosecuting the former police chief; those aiding and abetting him must also face legal consequences,” Iftekharuzzaman said.

He further said, “It’s unacceptable that the former police chief went unnoticed by the government, especially when he set a shocking precedent by openly engaging in corruption and amassing substantial wealth. In such a scenario, it’s logical to presume that the government not only shielded and supported him but also, in some instances, actively encouraged his actions, contributing to the emergence of Frankenstein within the political sphere of bureaucracy.”

 

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