Friday 12th of July 2024

Settle stake with Borak Real Estate, HC to DNCC

Morning Mirror Desk »

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The High Court on Monday directed the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) to take possession of their stake in the building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue from Borak Real Estate Ltd within the next two months.

It directed the authorities concerned to settle this issue as per agreement between the DNCC and Borak Real Estate Ltd within the stipulated time. HC bench of justices Md Nazrul Islam Talukder and Khizir Hayat Lizu passed the order after hearing a writ petition in this regard.

The court also issued a rule seeking explanation as to why the inaction and failure of those involved in collecting these assets worth several hundred crores of Taka should not be declared illegal.

Concerned parties have also been asked to submit a compliance report before the court within the next three months, after settling this issue.

Earlier the same day, Barrister Syed Saydul Haque Suman filed a writ petition before the court bringing allegations of corruption in the construction of the 28-story building, and sought an order for conducting an Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) investigation.

Advocate Md Abu Taleb, a lawyer of Borak Real Estate Ltd, said the court instead directed to settle the issue within two months as per the agreement signed between the DNCC and Borak Real Estate over the building’s ownership.

About the corruption allegations, Taleb said, “After hearing all sides, the High Court did not pass a rule for conducting an investigation over the graft allegation, as it is primarily satisfied that no corruption incident took place.”

The Prothom Alo had published a news article on June 1 bringing allegations of irregularities and corruption over the construction and ownership allocation of the building in 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue, located in the capital’s Banani area.

After the report was published, Borak Real Estate had sent a rejoinder to the Prothom Alo editor protesting the news, but the Bangla daily did not publish it.

Later, on Saturday, the Borak Real Estate served a legal notice to Prothom Alo Editor and Publisher Motiur Rahman, and its correspondent Mohammed Mostafa over the defamatory report on the building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue.

Supreme Court Advocate Md Abu Taleb sent the legal notice, on behalf of Borak Real Estate Ltd and its Managing Director Mohd. Noor Ali.

The notice demanded the removal of news regarding the building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue from Prothom Alo’s online and social media without delay, and payment of Tk 500 crore as compensation for the loss of reputation of the clients Borak Real Estate and Mohd. Noor Ali.

It also demanded an unconditional apology from Prothom Alo for publishing the defamatory news article regarding the building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue.

The Borak Real Estate authorities said the 28-storey building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue is a joint project of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) and Borak Real Estate Ltd, and the property has been built following every regulation.

After the vetting and approval process carried out by BUET and the then Dhaka City Corporation, Borak secured clearance for the construction of 30 storeys from every relevant government agency, including the Ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Co-operatives.

Despite readily available facts, the national daily Prothom Alo published a news article on the building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue, presenting ill-motivated, confusing, incomplete, and untrue information to tarnish Borak’s image.

It should be noted that Borak Real Estate had contacted the city corporation in writing on multiple occasions, urging them to take over their share in the building on 44 Kemal Ataturk Avenue since 2015, but the city corporation is yet to do so.

The company wrote separately to the Local Government Division secretary on April 30, 2023, the LGRD minister on March 31, 2021, and Prime Minister’s Office on July 16, 2018, seeking to resolve the matter, but to no avail.

Shares of this establishment were allotted, and construction moved forward as per regulations.

Under a competition held in 2004, the then Dhaka City Corporation awarded Borak a “Letter of Award” in 2006 for submitting the best offer under RFP, and with pre-approval from the LGRD ministry.

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