A local leader of Joypurhat unit of ruling party Awami League with malign intention grabbed the lands of 70-year-old Joypurhat Library and Club through secret lease system.
Sources said the Joypurhat Library and Club was established in 1947 in the district town near Dr Abul Kasem parade-ground aiming to build reading habit among the inhabitants. After 70 years of its establishment, the authorities were trying to build new buildings for the library and club on January 22, but the district administration stopped the construction works saying that the lands were leased by Joypurhat District Awami League unit’s Organising Secretary Zillur Rahman Khan.
The administration also ordered the library and club authorities to remove their equipments from the lands immediately.
Later, the authorities came to know that the district administration had allotted the land in the name of Zillur Rahman on October last year through a hidden lease system.
Utpol Kumar, cultural secretary of the library, said: “This place was the baby crib of culture and sports of the district. Some renowned cultural personalities performed here. But on January 22, we knew that the land was not ours anymore. District administration gave lease it to Awami League leader Zillur Rahman without knowing us. This was a great loss of the culture.
“We along with the culture loving people in the district will go for movement for recovering the lands,” he said.
Raja Chowdhury, general secretary of the library and club, said: “The district administration forced us to stop the construction works.”
When contacted, Zillur Rahman said on Wednesday over mobile phone that, “I had leased the land for newspaper office on October last but did not get the land yet.”
Ex-district administrator SM Solaiman Ali said: “The library and club authorities used the lands without proper documents for about hundred years. We informed them several times to take necessary steps to complete the paper works but they did not response on our calls. Later we gave the land to Zillur Rahman.”
Chief Executive Officer of the district administration Md Abu Bakar Siddique said: “Building any establishments on the land of district administration is totally illegal. That’s why we stopped construction works of the library and club.”