ACC reluctant to arrest accused
Staff Correspondent: ACC is taking time to arrest former MP Kamrul Ashraf Khan Poton despite a case in the fertilizer embezzlement case of Tk 581 crore. This contractor has been embezzling crores of taka by selling the fertilizers in the open market without supplying them.
Although he is a businessman by profession, he is controlling the fertilizer business with capital. He is selling government fertilizers in the open market under the name of his company. Poton is finally going to be caught in the net of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) in the fertilizer embezzlement case.
Recently, the ACC filed a case against the former MP of Narsingdi-2 constituency, Kamrul Ashraf Khan Poton, in connection with the embezzlement of 71 thousand metric tons of fertilizer worth Tk 581.58 crore. ACC Deputy Director Rafikuzzaman is the plaintiff in the case.
However, Poton has not been arrested yet, even though he is out in public. Four other people from Poton Traders, which he owns, have been named as defendants in the case.
In response to the question whether Poton will be arrested before fleeing somewhere, ACC Secretary Md. Mahbub Hossain said that a case has been filed based on the information obtained from the investigation. After the case is filed, the investigating officer will do what is required to be done as per the provisions of the law. If he thinks legal action will be taken after investigation then he will do so.
According to the investigation, 71,801 metric tons of urea fertilizer was discharged from seven ships imported from abroad through Bangladesh Chemical Industries Corporation-BCIC between November 2021 and May 15, 2022.
However, Kamrul Ashraf Khan Potton’s company Potton Traders embezzled the fertilizers without supplying them. The value of poton embezzled fertilizer is Tk 581.58 crore. Although the fertilizers were discharged from the ship, they were not reached at the government warehouse but were moved elsewhere by the transport contractor company Poton Traders.
Fertilizer business has been held hostage by this poton for many years. It also has the control of transport contractors for the delivery of imported public-private fertilizers from ports to government warehouses.
According to the ACC case, Daily Industry has learned that under the JTUG agreement in the fiscal year 2021-2022, BCIC and Messrs. Potton Traders and Principal Dry Bulk Shipping have a total of 90,245,530 metric tons of urea fertilizer. A total of 13 local transport contracts were signed to supply the warehouse.
M/s Potton Traders took delivery of 215 thousand 377.566 metric tonnes of urea fertilizer transported under seven contracts out of 13 contracts and supplied 1 lakh 43 thousand 576.258 metric tonnes of urea fertilizer to the respective warehouses of BCIC and the remaining 71 thousand 801.31 metric tonnes. Urea fertilizer is imbibed without delivery to the respective warehouses as per the terms of the contract.
According to ACC, according to the calculation of poton traders in transit, they supply 350-400 metric tons of urea fertilizer per day out of a total of 66 thousand 222.18 metric tons of urea fertilizer. But BCIC says it has not supplied 350-400 metric tonnes of urea fertilizer per day as promised.
In view of failure of M/s Potton Traders to supply urea fertilizer as per their commitment and supply schedule, ascertain the quantity, position of stock of urea fertilizer at various wharfs and points.
In this regard, BCIC formed three investigation committees to submit a detailed report on November 10 last year and submitted the investigation report on December 7 and 8 of the following month. According to the information provided by M/s Poton Traders, the investigation committee inspected the surface in Khulna, Noaparaghat, Shiromani, Nagarbari, Baghabari Ghat, Barisal and found the existence of about 1 thousand 307.976 metric tons of fertilizer against the total of 66 thousand 222.18 metric tons.
Regarding Potton’s fertilizer embezzlement, ACC Deputy Director (Public Relations) Aktarul Islam told that Kamrul Ashraf Khan Potton, the owner of M/s Potton Trerdus, broke the terms of the contract by signing a conditional contract for the supply of urea fertilizer for seven ships of BCIC.
His office staff did not deliver the allocated fertilizer to the contracted warehouse. Shahadat Hossain Nipu (General Manager), Md. Nazmul Alam Badal (GM), Md. Sohrab Hossain (North Bengal Representative) and Md. With the help of Ataur Rahman (Khulna and Nawapara representative) embezzled 71 thousand 801.31 metric tons of government fertilizers. Poton also gave false information to BCIC that the said embezzled fertilizer was in transit.
In response to the question whether the accused can be arrested in the case of a case, Aktarul Islam said that if it is necessary to arrest the accused in the case of a complaint or a case, then the ACC has arrested the accused.
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