Nine months after Bangladeshi banker Proshanta Kumar Halder, alias Shib Shankar Halder, who opened a can of worms that exposed payment of kickbacks to Bangladesh PM Sheikh Hasina’s son Sajeeb Wazed Joy, was severely assaulted inside Kolkata’s Presidency Correctional Home.
The assault and the resultant injuries suffered by Halder, whose revelations to the ED about the kickbacks were exposed by Northeast News on September 8, were brought to the notice of a Kolkata CBI court on April 28, 2023.
Passing orders, a Special CBI court — where a chargesheet in the money laundering case against Halder and five of his associates was filed on July 16, 2022 — said, “The facts involved relates to a very serious incident of attack inside the Correctional Home.
“Hence, let a copy of this petition be sent to the Superintendent of Presidency Correctional Home, Alipore asking him to submit a report in this regard and the action taken by him by the next date i.e. on 16.05.2023”.
The judge also observed that “on 22.04.2023 and on another subsequent date, he (Halder) was attacked inside the Presidency Correctional Home, Alipore”.
ED sources and legal officials involved in the case expressed shock at the unprovoked attack on Halder by unidentified persons who they suspect acted “at the behest of external forces.”
Speaking to Northeast News, ED Public Prosecutor Arijit Chakrabarti confirmed the veracity of the September 8 report which brought to light payment of kickbacks to the tune of Tk 1,500 to the Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s son Sajeeb Wazed Joy in 2014.
The ED chargesheet documents the names of relatives and associates of apex level politicians, from across the Bangladeshi political spectrum, who were paid kickbacks or received “financial benefits” for the award of business contracts to a powerful and influential businessman Mohammad Saiful Alam.
A resident of Singapore, Alam is the chairman of Reliance Finance Ltd and NRB Global Bank Ltd besides other businesses in Bangladesh and other Southeast Asian countries.
Halder, who was managing director of Reliance Finance Ltd between 2009 and 2015, said in his supposed confession to the ED that in 2014, in a deal involving a 1300 MW power plant in Bangladesh, Md. Saiful Alam made a windfall gain of Taka 3000 crore.
“This favour was extended by the present Bangladesh government, in lieu of kickbacks/financial benefits extended to Mr Sajeeb Wazed Joy…by Md. Saiful Alam to the tune of Tk 1500 crores,” Halder’s disclosure statement to the ED reveals.