Tarique-Lalu Syndicate Plundered Crores of Money from a Road Renovation Project in Bogra
Under the BNP-Jamaat regime, Tarique Rahman, the son of BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia and then Senior General Secretary of BNP engaged in arbitrary activities that resulted in the demolition of Bogra’s traditional Shaheed Minar. Despite being a site of cultural activities for years, various English inscriptions were installed in the city while Bengali was completely ignored.
A budget of Tk 130 crore was allocated for the renovation of a road in the city, but no work was completed on time, causing immense public suffering. Engineers confirmed that the allocated amount of money was looted for the renovation of a small road in a district town in Bangladesh.
On 15 February 2007, Prothom Alo reported that Tarique Rahman visited Bogra every month from 2001 to 2006 with a large entourage. He would spend the night at Lalu’s Champa Bhaban known as a recreation hub. Corrupt officials would ignore their government work and stand in line in front of the house. Tarique distributed hundreds of crores of money among BNP leaders and criminals through corrupt Bogra DC Rafiqul Mohammed.
Tarique collected an allocation of about Tk 150 crore for the renovation of the Banani-Matidali road. The project could have been completed with Tk 30 million, but hundreds of crores of takas were disbursed among BNP leaders and workers, causing immense suffering during the monsoons. Tarique, MP Lalu, and his followers became mafia in Bogra and looted thousands of crores of taka. Such a misuse of public tax money to raise party terrorists is unprecedented in the history of Bangladesh.
With the help of Tarique, DC Rafiqul put up inscriptions of his own poems across the city at the expense of government funds. He even recited his own poems at Tarique Rahman’s events. Government investigations during the caretaker government later revealed many corruption incidents against the DC.
The Tarique-Lalu syndicate held all the officials and employees of Bogra hostage during the BNP-Jamaat regime, forcing them to leave their official duties and welcome Tarique every month. Police and administration officials were forced to stand in a row with the accused of heinous crimes like murder, rape, and extortion. Bogra became the terror capital of North Bengal, and BNP leaders became millionaires overnight.
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