The government on Thursday sent Joint Secretary AKM Jahangir, an officer on special duty (OSD), on forced retirement for meeting BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia, breaching government service rules.
The Public Administration Ministry in a gazette notification stated Jahangir has been sent on retirement in the public interest.
The order, signed by Ministry's Joint Secretary (APD) Muhibul Haque, also said that he had completed 25 years in public service. He was sent to retirement following the section 9(2) of the Public Servants (Retirement) Act, 1974. The notification added he will enjoy all retirement benefits.
According to the section of the act, government has the authority to send a public servant to compulsory retirement, which is widely known as forced retirement, after completion of his 25 years service in case of public interest.
The Ministry officials said that Jahangir is the only senior officer, who completed his 25 years service among the officials and employees accused of meeting Khaleda Zia.
According to different sources, more than 50 public servants attended the meeting with Khaleda Zia at the BNP Chairperson's Gulshan office on December 4. The Ministry is examining the names of other accused officials and employees, whose names are in the lists of the intelligent agencies.
"The Ministry also decided to form a committee to investigate the incident and examine the names of the accused. It would be formed soon," State Minister for Public Administration Ismat Ara Sadique told reporters on Thursday.
She said the ministry already started taking actions against them. The rest of the accused officials will also be punished.
Meanwhile, the ministry official told the Daily Observer that they had already requested the Ministries and Divisions concerned to take punitive steps against the respective non-cadre officials and employees. They will also take punitive actions against them.
According to witnesses, several pro-BNP secretaries and officials, who were made officers on special duty (OSD) and had retired from service earlier, were present at the meeting.
The Ministry of Public Administration sources said several lists with the names of around 30 former and incumbent senior government officials and employees were handed over to the Ministry by the intelligent agencies.