They demanded that the agro farm chairman, Manik Chandra Barman, return their money
About 400 marginalized farmers are in distress after an agro farm took Tk13 crore from them in the name of turkey farming in Panchagarh.
“Shwapnotari Agro Services Turkey Farm and Hatchery Ltd” was accused of taking the money from the farmers to invest in turkey farming, promising them high profits.
A huge crowd, including the 400 cheated farmers, protested by forming a human chain on the Dhaka-Panchagarh highway on Tuesday.
They demanded that the agro farm chairman, Manik Chandra Barman, return their money and urged the authorities to take legal action against him.
According to the farmers, the “fake” agro farm gave them high hopes of making profit within 90 days through turkey farming.
The farmers took loans from local NGOs, and some of them even sold their land and jewellery, to give Manik the money in the hope of making a hefty profit.
The farmers have already submitted a written complaint to the Panchagarh deputy commissioner’s office.
Manik is from Thakurgaon Sadar’s Goreya Golampur village. His company’s registration number is “C-145519/19”. His current address is Sujalpur Switchgate in Dinajpur.
The company’s employees took the money from the farmers after taking their signatures on stamp papers.
According to the deal, the farmers were supposed to get turkey chicks and profit from the amount of money they invested. But none of that happened within the time promised by Manik’s agro farm.
Rehena Akhter of the district’s Ramer Danga, said: “I sold all of my gold (jewellery) and withdrew from my DPS account at the bank and gave them Tk6 lakh. They were supposed to give me Tk8 lakh, including profit after 90 days. Now, almost six months have passed and those men are nowhere to be found.
“I will soon be on the streets, as I have nothing left.”
Mosharraf Hossain, a farmer from Rajalipara village, said: “I gave them around Tk3.72 lakh after selling my cows and land. They only returned Tk1 lakh, but no turkey chick or the rest of the amount.”
“Like me, many farmers have become destitute. I urged our prime minister and home minister to take strong action against the culprit.”
Dhaka Tribune tried several times to call Manik’s mobile phone numbers (01740819377, 01303115014), but he was unreachable.
In the meantime, Manik sent a letter addressing the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) DG, where he said he would return everyone’s money by December of this year. A copy of the letter was also sent to the Panchagarch Press Club.