Kabir Hossain Sarder, upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) of Savar upazila under Dhaka district, is likely to lose his job on charges of gross negligence of his duties as he failed to prevent the collapse of Rana Plaza, which claimed the lives of over 390 workers and injured at least 2,500 others on April 24. The UNO had provided a ‘risk-free certificate’ to the owner of the building, Sohel Rana, even after cracks were spotted in Rana Plaza, state minister for labour and employment Monnujan Sufian told reporters a day after the building collapsed. The state minister has also urged the authorities to drop the Savar UNO from the home minister’s probe committee. As a result, the authorities have finally dropped the UNO’s name from the list of committee members.
Divisional commissioner of Dhaka division, AN Shamsuddin Azad Chowdhury, told The Independent that they will take stern action against the Savar UNO after receiving the report from the inquiry committee in this connection.
“We are looking into the matter and it has come to the notice of the highest level of the government,” he said.
Dhaka deputy commissioner (DC) Shaikh Yusuf Harun told this correspondent that they are going to take action against the UNO within a few days.
“The rescue operations are likely to be affected if we withdraw the UNO right now,” he explained.
“The UNO, who is facing allegations, is likely to be dismissed from his job on charges of gross negligence of his duties,” the DC added.
The chief of an inquiry committee and an additional secretary of the home ministry, Mainuddin Khandokar, said the committee would talk to the Savar UNO, who would be excluded from the home ministry’s probe committee.
“We will make a recommendation in our inquiry report that departmental action be taken against the UNO if we get confirmation of any negligence of his duties on his part in connection with the Rana Plaza tragedy,” he said.
Allegations have been levelled that the UNO also favoured that operations of the garments factories housed in the building would continue even after cracks were spotted in the nine-storey building.
Local people of Savar area alleged that the UNO is responsible for the tragedy. They also alleged that the UNO had misused his power and helped his relatives capture landed properties over the last few months. Information has been received that the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) served notices twice to the UNO over his alleged involvement in irregularities. Kabir Hossain Sarder, a BCS administration cadre officer, joined as UNO here 18 months ago.
-With The Independent input