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Bangladesh to probe charges against Grameen Bank founder

Monday December 06, 2010 06:22:52 PM, IANS

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'Grameen' Yunus refutes $100 mn anomalies charge

Bangladeshi Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus has refuted a charge that he had transferred $100 million aid meant for his micro-credit bank Grameen to other projects. The bank's founder told The Daily Star 

Dhaka: Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said her government would investigate the alleged unauthorised fund transfer by Grameen Bank founder Muhammad Yunus.

"Obviously, there should be an extensive investigation," she said Sunday.

"It is time to know what had been going on in the name of poverty alleviation and with the fate of the poor people. You can't hide the truth for a long time," Hasina was quoted as saying by New Age newspaper Monday.

She said the "blood suckers of the poor cannot escape for all time".

She was reacting to an expose in a Norwegian TV programme that alleges that Yunus had violated a contract to transfer funds meant for rural credit for Grameen Bank's other projects.

Yunus, who won the Nobel Peace Prize for his endeavour in rural banking, has welcomed the probe.

The Nobel laureate said in a brief statement issued in Lisbon, Portugal, Sunday night: "The prime minister has called for an investigation into the press reports that have surfaced recently with regard to Grameen Bank.

"I welcome such initiative and I am confident that this will resolve the matter and bring the truth to the citizens of Bangladesh as soon as possible."

Yunus has claimed the transfers were done to ensure "proper use of funds" and "transparency", and that the dispute with the Norwegian government had been resolved.

The prime minister alleged that the micro-financers nurse poverty to run their brisk business.

According to United News of Bangladesh (UNB) news agency, Hasina said: "The micro-financers make the people of this country their guinea pig. They are sucking blood from the poor in the name of poverty alleviation.

The prime minister observed that the poor hardly ever came out above the poverty line after taking loan from the micro-financers.

Hasina alleged that the fund transfer took place to evade tax and that was very unfortunate.

She said at present, the government had a 25 percent stake in the Grameen Bank.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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