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Agrani Bank MD Hamid refuses to explain credit anomalies of Moon Group to BB

The Agrani Bank managing director has ignored a notice by the central bank demanding explanations over suspected irregularities in loan disbursement, reports bdnews24.com

The deadline for replying to the show-cause notice, which had asked him to explain why he should not be removed, expired on Mar 16.

But Syed Abdul Hamid has paid no heed to the notice which Bangladesh Bank served on Feb 17.

It had asked Hamid to make his case by Mar 3 and later extended the time to Mar 16 on his appeal.

Bank Company Act provides for serving a notice before removal of a bank official.

An official with the central bank’s Banking Regulation and Policy Department told bdnews24.com on Wednesday on condition of anonymity, “He (Hamid) has neither replied to the notice, nor has he asked for time.”

He said Bangladesh Bank has taken no decision on him given the situation arising from the resignation of the governor and removal of two of his deputies.

Syed Abdul Hamid

Syed Abdul Hamid

The Agrani Bank MD was not available on his mobile phone for comment. He did not reply to an SMS from bdnews24.com for his version.

A central bank official said it had decided to remove the Agrani Bank MD over the suspected loan disbursement to several businesses, including Moon Group.

Bangladesh Bank had sent a letter to Hamid asking him to take actions against Deputy Managing Director Mizanur Rahman Khan for his alleged involvement in the irregularities.

He was relieved of his regular duties after the letter.

Agrani Bank had allegedly disbursed loans amounting to Tk 1.15 billion to a project of Moon Group three and a half years ago though they had no ‘valid documents’.

The group defaulted on repayment of the funds.Agrani Bank tried to recover the money by auctioning assets, including Moon Group building and land, mortgaged with the bank but a court injunction stood in its way.

Many believe that Moon Group Chairman Mizanur Rahman is very close to an MP in Dhaka.

There are allegations that the land at Dhaka’s Kalyanpur, which was mortgaged, had been grabbed by the group.

One Sheikh Md Joynal Abedin and his son Sheikh Md Abdul Gani claimed the ownership of the land and submitted documents to Agrani Bank in support of their claim.

The central bank blamed Hamid and Khan for disbursement of the loans without properly checking backing on the ownership.

The central bank had written to the finance ministry that ‘a cartel’ led by Khan had put a huge amount of money of depositors at risk by disbursing loans to Moon Group keeping Hamid in the loop.

But the ministry took no action, rather it made Khan deputy managing director from general manager while MD Hamid got his job extended thrice.

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