The Criminal Investigation Department investigators on Sunday again visited the Medical Education and Family Welfare Division of the health ministry, from where 17 files, mostly related to purchases by different public medical colleges, went missing by Wednesday, while six of the division’s employees were taken to the CID headquarters to examine their role in connection with the incident.

Ministry officials said that they identified 12 employees of lower tiers who worked in a crammed 15 square feet small room where a four-drawer file cabinet stood along with five other lockers and cabinets.

The CID team took pictures of the employees in the room and their fingerprints.

The ministry officials said that those taken to the CID headquarters in the capital’s Malibagh area after several hours of investigation were stenographers-cum-computer operators Md Joseph Sardar and Ayesha Siddiqua, both of whom had the keys to the cabinet from where the files went missing, despatch section staff Badal Goswami, office assistants Mintu Miah and Abdul Bari and door-key keeper Mohammad Billa.

The CID investigators also collected mobile phone numbers of all employees working in the room.

CID spokesperson additional police superintendent Azadur Rahman said that they did not arrest the ministry employees but were trying to have a clear picture from them of what could have happened.

The room from where the files went missing is attached to the chamber of the division’s additional secretary for development wing Md Shahadat Hossain in Building 3 at the secretariat.

Shahadat said that six of the 12 employees were taken by the CID for collecting information while the rest would be taken by them once their interrogation was complete.

Different intelligence agencies were also visiting the office while employees said that there were no CCTV cameras in the room.

Medical Education Division deputy secretary Nadira Haydar filed a general diary with the Shahbagh police station on Thursday evening in connection with the files going missing.

Files on purchases by Shaheed Tajuddin Ahmed Medical College, Rajshahi Medical College and other medical colleges, on vehicle allocation and purchases for training schools and on the population-based cervical and breast cancer screening programme, including electronic data tracking, were among those that went missing, according to the general diary.


The division formed a three-member probe committee headed by administration wing additional secretary Md Shah Alam, asking it to submit its report in a week, said health ministry officials.

Shahadat said, ‘We are more serious about the police investigation as we want to see the offenders identified.’

‘Among the files lost, there are none that can cause serious problems to the ministry. All the files were related mostly to purchase orders, just giving permissions to institutions based on their requirement,’ he said. 

The files disappeared after various irregularities in health ministry projects and Covid-related purchases have come to light since the coronavirus outbreak in the country in March 2020. 

The Anti-Corruption Commission has, meanwhile, initiated inquiries and investigations into various incidents of corruption and irregularities in the health sector.

According to media reports, Shaheed M Monsur Ali Medical College at Sirajganj procured 50 tubes for blood testing for a staggering sum of Tk 67.40 lakh.

Another incident of corruption in procurement by the Central Medical Stores Depot has come to light recently, in which the authorities concerned issued a bidder the work order to procure 150 ICU beds ignoring the lowest bidder, a clear violation of the government procurement policy.

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