BTRC tops the list of wrongdoers
The Comptroller and Auditor General on Monday disclosed 17 audit reports involving financial irregularities of Tk 6,195 crore where Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission topped the wrongdoing government agencies and ministries.
The reports were submitted to the president and to the Public Accounts Committee of parliament for their consideration.
The CAG office conducted special audit on the BTRC from 2001-2002 to 2009-2010 fiscal years that revealed that the government lost Tk 2,628 crore in revenue because of several financial irregularities.
The BTRC did not impose fine on Warid Telecom, which is now Airtel, despite irregularities in share transaction by the company that led to the government’s revenue loss, said the report.
It said the BTRC in different cases did not fine the illegal voice over internet protocol businesses and incurred revenue losses.
It also said that the BTRC in several cases failed to collect spectrum charges, licences fee and other charges as per its own rules.
In another report, the CAG found the government lost Tk 880 crore in revenue because of several financial irregularities in Janata Bank and Rupali Bank during the fiscal year 2010-11.
The report said the government lost the revenue as the banks granted loans without assessing risks, failed to recover mortgaged assets, created forced loans and rescheduled loans without down-payment.
An annual audit report on Janata Bank, Sonali Bank, Agrani Bank, Rupali Bank, Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank, Investment Corporation of Bangladesh, BASIC Bank and BDBL showed that the government lost Tk 796 crore in revenue during the fiscal year 2009-10.
The report said the government lost the revenue as the banks failed to realise money from the consortium banks and funded unfinished projects without assessment.
A special audit report on Agrani Bank’s loan rescheduling showed that the government lost Tk 713 crore in revenues.
The report said the bank rescheduled loans and waived interest without covering the cost of fund.
It also said that the bank paid commission to debt collection agents despite agents failed to perform as per the contract.
A special audit report on Sonali Bank for the fiscal year 2010-11 showed that the government lost Tk 663 crore in revenue as the bank failed to reschedule its loans properly.
The report said Sonali Bank rescheduled the loans without taking down-payment that caused the government loss.
It also failed to realise the price of mortgaged assets as the assets were sold without informing the bank.
‘We have placed the audit reports before the president and for the first time we are sharing the reports with the media,’ CAG Masud Ahmed told reporters at a briefing at the CAG office in the capital.
He said that the audit department was hopeful that the government would take the audit reports into consideration and would collect the money from the accused.
‘We can only find the financial irregularities but we have no authority to take any action,’ Masud said in reply to a question.
Asked why there is such delay in preparing audit reports as the CAG is
releasing audit reports for 2009 or 2011 in 2014, he replied, ‘Firstly, we start audit after a fiscal year ends. It sometime takes six months after the end of a fiscal year to start the audit. Secondly, as we accuse people or authorities for financial misconducts, we have to give them fair enough time to justify themselves,’ he said.
The government collected and adjusted Tk 7,880 crore in the fiscal year 2013-14 from various audit objections.