Hawa Bhaban Used to Control PSC: No Jobs Without Money, Promotions based on Lobby & List


Published on August 7, 2023
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During the BNP-Jamaat regime from 2001 to 2006, government job without money was quite impossible. Each job would cost Tk 3 to Tk 15 lakh with some discount for party activists of Chhatra Dal or Shibir. Meritorious students from ordinary families were plunged into extreme misery due to the recruitment trade through PSC. But after the formation of the Awami League government, the PSC became transparent by carrying out a clean-up campaign. As a result, millions of people are now getting government jobs according to their merits.

Let’s have a look into how Tarique Rahman corrupted the PSC, and how Khaleda Zia's government used to cheat the state jobs.

BNP-Jamaat started partisan and politicization of the government institutions soon after forming the government in 2001. Even constitutional institutions like PSC were turned into the corruption hub. The leak of the 24th BCS question raised a storm of criticism across the country. The caretaker government had to cancel the viva result of the 27th BCS exam due to rampant corruption after investigation by Samakal on January 27, 2007 revealed evidences of anomalies.

First, Khaleda Zia appointed 10 members as PSC members based on party considerations. Then, Tarique Rahman started a recruitment trade through them. In this case, Mamunur Rashid, the cousin of PSC member Professor Mahfuzur Rahman, who is in charge of the conducting 25th BCS, worked as ‘middle man’ in between the job candidates and Hawa Bhaban and PSC members. He worked as an APS to State Minister Lutfor Rahman Khan Azad of Jute and Textiles ministry. This Mamun used to liaise with Tarique Rahman's subordinate PSC Chairman ZN Tahmida Begum.

The information came out after the Mamun’s diary, where he noted down details of money transactions with candidate information was seized in the anti-corruption drive during the caretaker government.

On the other hand, another PSC member Mozammel Haque, also former joint secretary, would throw out the candidates from the Viva board because of their identities of the freedom fighter's sons and daughters.

Ashraful Islam Chowdhury, another PSC member in charge of conducting 27th BCS, was involved in massive corruption. In Dhaka University campus, he was widely known as doing recruitment business using his assistant director. Before the result, a candidate from Brahmanbaria used to say that he would become ASP and he was in exchange of Tk 21 lakh.

The 26th Special BCS was arranged only for the education cadre. Candidates, spending Tk five lakh on an average, and associated with BNP-Jamaat would get maximum preference. The mark sheet of the written examination was overwritten and extra marks were added in their viva board. Apart from this, BNP-Jamaat era Public Service Commission (PSC) has also committed the heinous incident of appointing more than 25 people to the police cadre from only Bogra and Azizul Haque College Chhatra Dal leaders and activists based on Tarique Rahman's list. The country never witnessed such a shameful incident.

Even according to the list of Hawa Bhaban, PSC Chairman Tahmida Begum has given employment and promotion to thousands of doctors. The pro-BNP doctors’ association DAB, indulged in corruption and looting in hospitals, medical colleges and health-care sector through AZM Zahid Hossain upon Tarique Rahman’s instruction. Prothom Alo published the report on March 24, 2007.

On May 17 and September 19, 2005, then on May 28, 2006 - in these three phases, a total of 500 doctors were appointed and promoted to the positions of assistant professors and associate professors on the recommendation of Hawa Bhaban during the BNP government. They did not have any experience and published articles in recognized journals as required by BMDC.

Also, in the last three months of power, BNP's MPs and ministers were involved in recruitment trade worth about Tk 400 crores. They quickly appointed more than 20,000 people in various ministries, organizations, schools, colleges and police.  The daily Janakanta published the report on July 19, 2006. Khaleda Zia and Tarique Rahman even planned to rig the vote by appointing 300 Chhatra Dal leaders as upazila election officers overnight through the PSC. But, their effort went in vain during the caretaker government.