Chittagong-12 (Patia) constituency MP and Jatiya Sangsad Whip Shamsul Haque Chowdhury and five others have been banned from traveling abroad. They have been charged with embezzlement, bribery, casino dealing and money laundering. Investigations are ongoing in the meantime.
During the investigation, the concerned officer applied to the court on June 7 for a ban on these people as they could have fled abroad. In this context, Dhaka Metropolitan Sessions Judge and Metropolitan Senior Special Judge Court Judge KM Imrul Kayesh banned six people from going abroad.
Subsequently, on June 13, the court issued the instruction to the Special Branch (SB) Airport Immigration of the police.
In the last few years, the name of Whip Shamsul Haque has come up in the search for non-income assets known in various ways including casinos. There are allegations that his wealth has increased by 1,546 percent. His son Nazmul Karim Chowdhury Sharun and other family members are also being investigated for corruption.
The other five persons who have been banned from traveling abroad by the court are: MP of Sunamganj-1 constituency Moazzem Hossain Ratan, MP of Bhola-3 constituency Nurunnabi Chowdhury Shaon, Joint Chief of the Ministry of Housing and Public Works Sajjadul Islam, former additional chief engineer Abdul Hai and Dhaka Wonders Club employee Abul Kalam Azad.
Syed Iqbal Hossain, director of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) and chief officer of the investigation team, told the media on Monday, "After the reveal of the casino scandal, the ACC banned the travel of several people, including Shamsul Haque Chowdhury.
Subsequently, as per the directions of the High Court, a court order was applied for ban on travel abroad in the case of six persons and the court granted it.”
He added, “The search for illegal assets is also going on against Whip Shamsul Haque.”
According to the court order, allegations of embezzlement of government funds through bribery of government officials, embezzlement of government funds through large-scale contracting work, smuggling of hundreds of crores of Taka through casino business and acquisition of non-income assets abroad are under investigation.
According to police sources, the court's instructions have already reached the immigration police. The concerned branch will monitor as per the instructions.
According to ACC sources, the ACC has started an investigation into Shamsul Haque, the ringleader of the controversial activities with the casino gang. Preliminary information about his involvement in gambling at the club also matches. However, all the allegations are at the investigation stage due to Coronavirus pandemic.