The Local Government Division on Sunday suspended 12 more chairmen and members of different unions councils of the country on charge of misappropriating government rice allocated to distribute among the poor.
Through separate circulars, the local government representatives, including three chairmen and nine union council members, were suspended, said a press release of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.
The circulars asked them to answer within 10 working days of getting the circulars as to why they would not be sacked from their posts permanently.
With the 12, a total of 24 elected local government representatives, most of which are arrested, have so far been suspended by the ministry.
Meanwhile, the law enforcement agencies arrested four more people, including an Awami League leader, from three districts for stealing government rice in 24 hours ending Sunday evening.
Local government minister Tajul Islam on Sunday warned of tough actions against those involved in relief materials theft and claimed that the number of irregularities had come down as the ministry was taking action against the accused local government representatives.
The three chairmen who were suspended on Sunday are Makhdum Kabir Tonmoy of Niyamatpur UP under Karimganj in Kishoreganj, Abdus Sattar of Arjunpur Baramhati UP under Lalpur in Natore and Mirza Golam Hafiz Sohagh of Shibganj in Bogura.
The nine UP members suspended are Md Reza of Arjunpur Baramhati under Lalpur in Natore, Md Zakir Hossain and Md Rokonuzzaman of Kedarpur under Babuganj in Barishal, Md Abdur Rob Patwari of Hazirhat under Monpura in Bhola, Sheikh Mosharrof Hossain and Rony Begum of Jainagar under Kalia in Narail, Md Rafiqul Islam of Khaskaulia under Chouhali in Sirajganj and Md Al-Amin Chowdhury and Asiya Khatun of Bagbati under Sirajganj sadar upazila.
In Rajbari, the upazila administration seized 138 sacks of rice of government’s food friendly programme from a shop at Bashara area of Pangsha upazila in the district and arrested the shop owner Abdur Razzak on Sunday afternoon.
A Rajshahi court sent Pakri union Awami League president and government rice dealer Alal Uddin Swapan of Godagari upazila to jail Sunday afternoon for misappropriating government rice.
Police said that Alal was arrested from his home at village Goalpara Saturday evening and 67 sacks of government rice were seized from his possession.
In Jamalpur, police arrested two traders– Md Moazzem, 60, and Md Mosharrof, 45, of village Gudail Bazarpara under Islampur in the district from their warehouse and seized 97 sacks of rice from there Sunday afternoon.
With the latest arrests, about fifty people, including many leaders and activists of ruling Awami League, were arrested for theft of relief rice.
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