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Akij Group Hospital

No action yet against councillor

Published : Monday, 30 March, 2020 at 12:00 AM  Count : 104

Law enforcers are yet to take any action against Dhaka North City Corporation's (DNCC) 24 No Ward Councilor Shafiullah Shafi who allegedly demanded extortion from Akij Group for its construction of a specialised hospital for novel Coronavirus treatment.
Shafi, also president of Tejgaon thana Awami League, along with some local people on Saturday compelled the Akij Group authority to stop construction of the hospital.
According to police, there are several slums in the area where Akij Group is constructing the hospital.
Instigating the slum people against building the hospital claiming that it may spread the virus in the area, the councilor led the demonstration surrounding construction of Akij Group's hospital sites at Tejgaon.
They chanted slogans against the construction, attacked the site and manhandled some workers there. Later, Akij Group postponed their construction work.
Later on Saturday, local parliament member and Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal called a meeting at his resident where the representatives of Akij Group and the councilor were present.
At the meeting, Akij Group was given permission to start construction of the hospital and the councilor gave assurance of assisting the group to contain spreading of the virus and ensuring treatment of the virus-infected people.
When contacted, Shafiullah Shafi told The Daily Observer that he had never demanded extortion from Akij Group.
Neither the local representatives nor the MP nor the police knew about Akij Group's plan to set up a hospital in the area. So, there was some misapprehension, he said.
Md Ali Hossain, Office-In-Charge of Tejgaon Police station, told the Daily Observer that works on the site resumed on Sunday.
"In the wake of the misunderstanding on Saturday, it was agreed that the project is part of a noble initiative and so the hospital will be built there on a temporary basis," Ali said.
A police patrol team was deployed in the area, said Ali, adding that the misunderstanding over the matter had been settled.
Earlier, Akij Group's Managing Director Sheikh Bashir Uddin said the hospital would be built on the conglomerate's empty plot next to the factory of motorcycle makers TVS in Tejgaon.

Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury, one of the entrepreneurs of the hospital and also the founder trustee of Gonosasthaya Kendra, said, "We hope that the government will seriously support us and also give necessary clearances soon".

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