FE ONLINE REPORT |
03 July 2022 19:29:49
A total of six bank accounts of lawyer Yousuf Ali, a lawyer from the “Grameen Telecom Workers and Employees Union”, and his room have been frozen after an allegation that the lawyer received more than Tk 120 million from customers’ fees in a single case filed against Grameen Telecom, an organization owned by Nobel Laureate Professor Muhammad Yunus.
During a press briefing held at the premises of the Supreme Court, the lawyer said: “I have learned that all my bank accounts have been frozen. I have three personal accounts. Two are my partner’s accounts and one is my room’s account. All six accounts have been frozen. I had about 22.5 million taka in my room account.
“120 million Tk is an imaginary figure. My clients received a huge sum of money from Grameen Telecom in an out-of-court settlement and I also received a large sum of money from them,” added the lawyer.
He said he had at least 100 clients who got more than 30 million Tk. Depending on the condition, all these 100 clients paid him more than 1.5-2.0 million Tk as fees. All fees he received from them through beneficiary account checks, the attorney added.
All cases filed by the “Grameen Telecom Workers and Employees Union” against Professor Muhammad Yunus and his organization Grameen Telecom have been withdrawn from various courts after the parties reached an out-of-court settlement regarding the employees’ claim .
On the same ground, the Companies Bench of the High Court Division of the Supreme Court on May 23 issued an order dismissing a motion filed by the employees seeking the liquidation of Grameen Telecom.
More than 110 complaints have been filed against Professor Muhammad Yunus and his organization Grameen Telecom by employees over their claim, said Barrister Mustafizur who appeared at the High Court hearing on behalf of Grameen Telecom.
During the hearing of the case on June 30 this year, the High Court Bench of Muhammad Khurshid Alam Sarkar said: “We heard that the lawyer for the employees was biased in exchange for money and that the employees were forced to settle the matter by compromise”.
The High Court also said: “There should be no irregularities in using the court. If everything is not in accordance with the law, the matter will be taken seriously. I don’t want to see any question about the integrity of the court and the lawyer.
There is no lawyer, not only in Bangladesh but also in this sub-continent, who can take a fee of 120 million taka in a case, the court also said expressing wonder.
The court then ordered the parties to submit a joint statement regarding the employees’ payments due and a list showing how much each of them was paid. At the same time, documents related to this were also requested to be submitted.
The court asked the parties to submit the relevant documents of the transactions to the court before August 2, 2022.
Afterwards, the parties’ lawyers informed the court that they had reached an out-of-court settlement in the amount of 4.37 billion taka. A total of 3.8 billion taka has already been paid to Grameen Telecom’s 168 out of 176 employees.
Payment of the remaining eight employees is delayed due to legal complications, since four of the employees are already deceased and four others are overseas.
Yousuf said earlier, “Workers and employees of the company are entitled to get 5% of Grameen Telecom’s net profit according to the rule. They will obtain it since 2006. But the company did not pay the contributions to the employees. In this circumstance, they moved the Labor Court and the High Court.