Sonali, Agrani, Rupali MDs under BB scanner

Bangladesh Bank is now scrutinising the performance of the managing directors of state-owned Sonali, Agrani and Rupali banks as their boards of directors and finance ministry recommended their reappointment.
A BB official said that the central bank had earlier found allegation against Agrani Bank managing director of sanctioning and disbursing loans violating rules and regulation to Moon Group.
The central bank is also disappointed over the performance of Sonali and Rupali banks’ managing directors as they (MDs) failed to develop the financial indicators of their banks during their ongoing tenure, he said.
The respective board of directors has already made decision to reappoint the managing directors for one year more as Sonali Bank’s MD Pradip Kumar Dutta’s tenure will end on June 16, Agrani Bank MD Syed Abdul Hamid on July 10 while Rupali Bank MD M Farid Uddin will complete his job within this month.
The finance ministry has also made a decision to reappoint the three MDs on June 9, 2015 for one year more.
According to Bank Company Act 1991 (amended), Bangladesh Bank is now enjoying sole power to give final approval to appoint or reappoint the managing directors of state-owned and private commercial banks.
The central bank is not allowed to enjoy the power for only three specialised banks — Bangladesh Krishi Bank, Rajshahi Krishi Unnayan Bank and Bangladesh Development Bank.
The BB official said that the central bank had earlier unapproved the finance ministry’s proposal to extend the job tenure of former Janata Bank managing director SM Aminur Rahman.
BB deputy governor SK Sur Chowdhury told New Age on Thursday that the finance ministry had already sent the required files of the three MDs to the central bank for final approval.
‘The BB is now reviewing their performances after which it will make final decision in this regard,’ he said.
When asked whether the central bank would reappoint the three MDs, Sur, however, declined to make any comment in this regard as the BB is yet to complete its review process.
The BB earlier requested the finance ministry to take action against nine officials and the managing director of Agrani Bank for their suspected involvement in the Moon Group financial scam.
The BB issued a letter to the MoF on March 15, 2015 requesting it to take measure against the alleged officials including the managing director as Agrani Bank did not take proper action against them despite the central bank directives, the BB official said.
The BB also issued a separate letter to Agrani Bank managing director Syed Abdul Hamid on March 14, 2015 saying that he (MD) could not avoid his responsibility for the loan scandal.
A BB inspection team earlier found that Agrani Bank disbursed around Tk 300 crore in loan to Moon Group owned by businessman Mizanur Rahman, violating the rules and regulations.
Of the total amount, Tk 115.18 crore was disbursed for construction of three buildings with unapproved structural designs. But Moon Group diverted the loan to other sectors without constructing the buildings.
The BB issued a different show-cause notice to Agrani Bank MD on December 12, 2014 asking him to explain why punitive measures would not be taken against him for his alleged involvement in the Moon Group financial scam.
Besides, the BB asked Hamid to take punitive action against nine other officials of the bank involved in the scandal within December 30, 2014, a central bank official said.
‘The central bank did not accept the reply to the show-cause notice of Hamid as he denied his involvement in the financial crime. Besides, he gave impunity to the nine officials from the corruption charge’, he said.
The Agrani Bank management only issued warning letters to the alleged nine officials without taking any action against them.
Source: New Age

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