Allegation against BRUR VC authentic: UGS probe report
Published: 09:10 PM, 2 March 2021 Updated: 09:11 PM, 2 March 2021
University Grants Commission (UGC) has found the authenticity of allegation against Begum Rokeya University, Rangpur (BRUR) Vice Chancellor Professor Dr. Nazmul Ahsan Kalimullah and the concerned persons for irregularities in Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina's priority special development project- Sheikh Hasina Student Hall, Dr. Wazed Research and Training Institute and in construction of the Independence Monument. The probe committee's report recommended legal action against those involved in corruption.
Relevant sources said, on June 14, 2017, Professor Dr. Kalimullah stopped construction of the project after being appointed as the fourth vice chancellor of the university. Manjur Quader, an engineer close to the Vice-Chancellor, was appointed as a member of the University's Planning, Development and Works Committee to oversee the development work of the university.
A few days later, in violation of the law and contract, the work orders of the consulting firm Architect Monowar Habib and Prakrit Construction Limited were cancelled and Engineer Manjur Quader was appointed as the second consultant. The name of the consulting firm owned by him is Professional Associates Limited. There are also allegations that architect Monowar Habib was intimidated in various ways during the cancellation of the work order.
The design of the two buildings (Sheikh Hasina Student Hall and Dr. Wazed Research and Training Institute) was changed without the approval of the approved DPP. Besides, the construction cost increased to more than double. Dr. Wazed Research Institution building cost became 61 crore from Tk 26.87 crore. And, the construction cost of Sheikh Hasina Student Hall was increased to Tk 107 crore from 51.35 crore.
On the other hand, although there is no consultancy fee in the original DPP, the current VC Nazmul Ahsan Kalimullah has spent Tk 40 lakh in that sector.
According to the sources, the UGC was directed to investigate the inconsistencies in the development projects of Begum Rokeya University during a meeting held with the project directors of various universities on December 12, 2019 under the chairmanship of the Education Minister.
Then on April 20 last year, a three-member probe committee was formed by convening UGC member Muhammad Alamgir. The other members are Ferdous Zaman, Director (now Secretary), Planning and Development Department, UGC and Durga Rani Sarkar, Additional Director, UGC.
The investigation committee came to inspect the spot on January 16 this year. During the inspection, they verified the project documents including the installation under construction of the special development project. The investigation report was submitted to the Ministry of Education on February 25. It shows that the investigation committee has found irregularities and corruption in the construction of three facilities of the university.