The cases were filed by two 'overenthusiastic' lawyers, DSCC mayor says
Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) Mayor Sheikh Fazle Noor Taposh on Tuesday urged the complainants to withdraw the two defamation cases filed against predecessor Sayeed Khokon.
The cases were filed by two “overenthusiastic” lawyers and Taposh was not at all involved in the process, according to the DSCC mayor.
“I request those who filed the defamation cases against Khokon to withdraw them. If I feel defamed, I will review the incident and act in the future,” he said when asked about the Sayeed Khokon issue during a press briefing at Nagar Bhaban in Dhaka on Tuesday.
The press briefing had been arranged to commemorate Sakrain, the kite-flying festival in Bangladesh.
Taposh also said that he would not speak to the media about the Khokon issue anymore, as it had already turned into a farce.
“Many people can make comments about the person in the mayor’s chair. Not all comments matter nor do they all need to be commented on,” he added.
The DSCC mayor further said the drives to evict illegal occupants from markets of the city corporation would continue.
Regarding allegations that he had transferred DSCC funds to Modhumoti Bank to make illegal profits, Taposh said: “That statement is misleading. As a private bank, Modhumoti Bank takes deposits from many government, semi-government and autonomous bodies.
“Even before I took charge, there were business or service transactions between DSCC and Modumoti Bank, and they are still there,” he added.
Earlier in the day, a Dhaka court deferred its order on the acceptance of the aforementioned cases till January 19.
Dhaka Metropolitan Magistrate Rajesh Chowdhury set the fresh date, Bench Officer Md Jony told Dhaka Tribune.
On Monday, Advocate Kazi Anisur Rahman and Advocate Sarwar Alam, both members of Dhaka Bar Association, filed the cases with the Dhaka Chief Metropolitan Magistrate’s Court.
On Saturday, former DSCC mayor Khokon claimed Taposh was no longer eligible for the office due to corruption. Khokon’s allegations followed the announcement of DSCC eviction drives against illegal shops, many of which were set up under Khokon’s tenure as DSCC mayor.
The former mayor alleged that Taposh had transferred hundreds of crores from DSCC funds to Modhumoti Bank, which Taposh owns, to make illegal profits.
“The mayor has violated the City Corporation Act 2009,” Khokon said, adding that Taposh should shun corruption himself before looking into the corruption of other DSCC officials.
Taposh, however, brushed off the allegations and described Khokon's remarks as “insignificant.”
On Sunday, Taposh said: “I don’t want to comment on [Sayeed Khokon’s] personal resentment."