Barapukuria graft charge is a 'sorry affair': Hafiz
Friday, 29 February 2008

Staff Correspondent

Hafizuddin Ahmed, leader of a faction of the BNP, Thursday said a graft case tied to Barapukuria Coalmine was a "sorry affair".

"There's nothing wrong in discharging the responsibilities according to the government rules and regulations," Hafizuddin told reporters at his Banani home.

He said the accused were innocent and they would eventually be acquitted of the charges. Khaleda Zia and 15 other people, including many of her former cabinet members, are accused in the case.

According to the charges, the accused had allegedly resorted to corrupt means to award the coalmine project to Chinese company CMC (Consortium of China National Machinery Import and Export Corporation).

The Khaleda administration signed the deal with CMC on June 4, 2005 for Tk 493.79 crore although it was the highest bidder among three. The deal breaches the public procurement rules, according to case details.

Third additional chief metropolitan magistrate for Dhaka Md Golam Rabbani Wednesday accepted the first information report and ordered the investigating officer to report back to court on March 30.

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