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Dhaka Tribune

Illegal establishments occupy National Mausoleum

Update : 02 May 2014, 08:12 PM

The National Mausoleum at Savar was erected to commemorate the supreme sacrifices of the martyrs in our liberation war. But the beauty of this place of national importance is being gradually ruined by some influential people with the aid of unscrupulous government officials.

In a recent visit to the place, this reporter saw that around five hundred illegal shops have been set up alongside the boundary wall of the mausoleum. Locals complained that the public officials and the police are jointly involved in operating these illegal businesses.

Sources said there are around five shops alongside the boundary wall of the mausoleum which are being run at the behest of the Asulia unit of the Bangladesh Hawkers’ League, the ruling party’s hawker wing. Every day the shops have to pay a sum of Tk70 as subscription in the names of leaders and activists of the organisation. It includes Tk30 as electricity bill, Tk20 as security fee, and Tk20 as daily rent.

Sumon, one of the shopkeepers told the Dhaka Tribune that he, along with all the other traders, has to pay the amount to the leaders of the organisation in order to continue possessing the place.

Requesting anonymity, a member of the Hawkers’ League association said they have around four hundred shops in that area. Abdul Mannan Munshi and Sree Gouranga Hawladar, two leaders of the Ashulia Hawkers’ League, raised Tk70 from each shop.

Officer-in-Charge (OC) of Ashulia police station Sheikh Badrul Alam, OC of Savar Highway police Mahbubur Rahman, In-Charge of Mausoleum police outpost, and Assistant Engineer of the Mausoleum Zakir Hossain Jocky are given fixed monthly bribes from the raised amount and the rest of the money is deposited in the organisation’s account. 

In addition to these shops, there are around one hundred temporary shops in front of the main entrance of the mausoleum.

These shops are being run at the behest of the in-charge of the police outpost of the mausoleum and the assistant engineer, sources claimed.

Shujan, one of the shopkeepers said he has to pay Tk20 on a daily basis to them.

Abdul Mannan Munshi, president of Bangladesh Hawkers’ League, confirmed the authenticity of the matter and said they raise the money for the development of the association.

The OC of the Ashulia police station denied the allegations and said actions would be taken if any police are involved in connection with the extortion.

Kamrul Hossain Molla, upazila nirbahi officer said they will soon start a drive to evict the illegal establishments alongside the Dhaka-Savar highway.

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