Editorial

Rice smuggling from govt warehouses

Take stern action against the corrupt officials


Bangladeshpost
Published : 30 Jun 2022 08:43 PM

After smuggling rice from government depots in Chattogram, the food grains are being diverted on a large scale to private godowns at dead of night. Some officials and employees of the government warehouses in the port city are stealing rice and selling them to the local hoarders. 

sPolice on Monday night seized a government rice-laden trick in front of a private godown at Chaktai, one of the commercial hubs in Chattogram.

The stockpiled rice sacks are kept at government warehouses to keep prices stable in the country’s market alongside for distribution among the poor as relief and ration for cops and army as well. But syndicates of unscrupulous food officials are looting the government rice in different ways and selling it to local traders under the very nose of the authorities concerned.

However, the authorities concerned say they are investigating the incidents, adding those who are involved in smuggling rice will be punished accordingly under the purview of law. 

Police suspect that syndicates may have unloaded huge amounts of rice in a similar way earlier. So, it is not possible for some employees to misappropriate a huge amount of rice without inside assistance from their high ups. 

It has been noticed that rice traders' syndicate always maintains good relations with food officials to get the stolen rice at cheap rate. After purchasing the stolen rice from the food officials, the traders take the food grains out, and then pack them in fresh sacks inscribed with the names of different rice mills so that none can suspect the sacks. 

The officials and employees who loot 

public money must be brought to book 

immediately

The government has been trying to stop the smuggling of rice by taking various measures such as installing cameras in warehouses. But the corrupt employees and officials showing thumb to the measures are easily smuggling sacks of rice out of warehouses. The chain of corruption, the biggest racket, has not yet been broken.

Corruption has long been a major problem hindering the sustainable development of the country.  In this regard, reaffirming her government’s tough stance against corruption, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina several times directed the Public Administration Ministry to issue a strong warning against graft by government employees and officials.

We must raise our voice against corruption. The authorities concerned must break the graft chain and take legal action against the officials identified earlier as corrupts. If the government wants to establish a graft-free administrative system in the country, at first its officials and employees must be honest, accountable and transparent. 

The officials and employees who loot public money must be brought to book immediately. Otherwise, government all efforts to build Bangladesh into a developed and prosperous country, free of hunger and poverty will go in vain.