We will send a letter to the executive engineer of RHD to conduct an eviction drive, says UNO Asif Anam
A former Awami League (AL) lawmaker illegally grabbed land belonging to the Roads and Highways Department (RHD) in Pabna.
Khandaker Azizul Haque Arzu, former lawmaker of Pabna -2 constituency, filled land with sand at Nagarbari ghat area under Bera upazila and constructed a market having at least 161 shops.
Arzu represented the Pabna-2 constituency from 2014 to 2018.
The former MP has taken at least Tk1 lakh to 2lakh in advance for each plot from the shop owners in the market. He is also collecting a large sum of money as rent per month.
Seeking anonymity, some shop owners of the market said they obtained possession of their plots by paying Tk1lakh to 2lakh to MP.
Contacted, acknowledging the allegation that the market was built on government-owned land, Khandaker Azizul Haque Arzu said he had built the market after taking verbal permission from the administration.
When asked about the money he got from the allocation of each plot in the market and the rent he has been collecting every month, Arzu said the amount was spent preparing and developing the market.
Speaking on the matter, Bera Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Asif Anam Sidique said: " Azizul Haque has illegally built a market on government-owned land and we have discussed the matter at the District Law and Order Review Committee meeting."
“In the meeting, the executive engineer of Pabna Roads and Highways Department (RHD) was asked to take legal action in this regard. We will send a letter to the executive engineer of RHD to conduct an eviction drive," said Asif Anam.
"We will also provide legal assistance to RHD if needed." the UNO added.
Meanwhile, many structures are also being built illegally at Bera Stockyard, Kashinathpur, and Bandherhat areas.
At the end of 2019, the Pabna Roads and Highways Department authorities conducted several drives there and evicted at least 600 illegal structures.
But some encroachers have started occupying those lands under RHD again by erecting structures.
Speaking on the matter, Pabna Roads and Highways Department (RHD) Executive Engineer AKM Shamsujjoha, said: "Taking advantage of Covid-19 crisis, some encroachers have again started building structures illegally on the reclaimed land. We will conduct an eviction drive soon."