‘Favouring the influential will tarnish govt image’

Despite Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s public announcements that she has no relatives, some field-level government officials are allegedly providing unlawful support to some people who claimed to be her relatives.

Political observers said if the officials do not stop giving such illegal patronisation to the controversial people, mostly politicians, the image of the government might be tarnished.

Leading civil society figures opined that in order to protect the clean image of the current elected government, zero-tolerance policy against corruption should be pursued against all the controversial quarters.      

A tragic launch accident, which took place after a cargo ship smashed into a passenger vessel in the river Shitalakkhya in Narayanganj recently, took 34 lives, but the owner of the launch, ML Sabit Al Hasan, failed to file a case approaching three police stations. 

Police did not record any case against cargo ship SKL-3 for reasons unknown. 

Local sources said the owner of SK Logistics' cargo ship is Sheikh Sharhan Naser Tonmoy, an Awami League MP from Bagerhat-2 constituency.

Four days have elapsed since the accident, but police are yet to seize the cargo ship.

The cargo ship, manufactured in a local dockyard, started plying under the influence of its owners and did not follow rules and regulations, a labour leader, Sabuj Shikdar, said.

Leader of a river transport labour organisation, Saiful Islam Jewel, told Bangladesh Post that there are 1,500 lighter ships carrying goods -- half of them ply without permission. Besides, 62 launches operate from Narayanganj to different other destinations.

Bandar police station Officer-in-Charge Dipok Kumar Shaha said, “Launch owner Alal Hossain came to police today when a BIWTA deputy director filed a case. I told him that if you want to file any case, please submit a complaint or you communicate with investigation officer of the existing case.”

River police station chief Shahidul Alam said the launch owner on Tuesday talked to sub-inspector Zakir but did not come to file any case.

Narayanganj district police superintendent Md Zayedul Alam told the Bangladesh Post that one incident always requires one case. “If somebody files two cases over an incident they will be merged and investigation will be carried out accordingly.