How the govt survives despite unrestrained corruption and chaos in all sectors including banking?14 January 2022 Editorial Desk
Newspaper report said Bangladesh Bank has fined National Bank Tk 55 lakh for taking an attempt to conceal loan related information of 11 influential persons. Nine of the 11 are -- bank's former chairman Zainul Haque Sikder, his two sons Rick Haque Sikder and Ron Haque Sikder, and six rests are other family members. In any consideration, it is a tough action against any commercial bank for gross violation of the banking rules. A central bank investigation report said National Bank did not submit the loan information of credit cards used by the 11 persons. The bank had allowed the persons to spend the depositors' fund beyond their foreign currency quota on the instruction of Zainul Haque Sikder, who passed away on February 10 last year. BB had fined Tk 5 lakh for each credit card as the bank had not submitted the relevant information to the Credit Information Bureau. It was learnt that the 11 persons spent $10.65 million (about Tk 91.4 crore) through international credit cards in a serious breach of banking rules. BB probe also found that the persons had laundered money abroad through the credit card. We're very much curious seeing the sudden action of central bank, when it usually prefers to play a silent role amid huge financial scandals in the banking sector. Who doesn't know that money laundering and looting money from banks by the directors is a very old and common trend in the country. So far we remember, the BB had fined seven commercial banks for their controversial share-market activities in August, 2017. What's interesting was that BB did not disclose the amount of fine -- saying it was "substantial amount of money". Even, the names of the errant banks were not unveiled. In August last year, BB had warned the non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs) of lending anomalies after its inspection found loans ending up to others rather to the actual borrowers. Asking the NBFIs to stop the malpractice, the BB cautioned that such lending a violation of the "Integrated Risk Management Guidelines for Financial Institutions-2016".
The people believe that banks are allowed to operate one after another only to appease a section of moneyed men so that they could do illegal financial activities without any obstacle. We're sure enough, if BB conducts an impartial inquiry against all commercial banks, enough evidence of corruption and irregularities would be found in almost all banks. Will the central bank go for it?