• Saturday, Dec 10, 2022
  • Last Update : 10:24 am

Mystery shrouds death of DGHS official, family claims suicide

  • Published at 05:16 pm June 21st, 2021
Representational photo: Bigstock

The body of the deceased has been sent for autopsy

Mystery shrouds the death of a Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) official, who was brought to the Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) on Monday noon.

The deceased was identified as Zahanul, 55. 

According to his family members, Zahanul was found in an unconscious state inside his home located in Dhaka’s Boro Moghbazar area.

He then was rushed to the DMCH where duty doctors declared him dead. 

They claimed that Zahanul – who was made officer on special duty (OSD) at the DGHS in 2009 – had committed suicide as he stopped receiving any salary for the past 10 months.

Speaking to Dhaka Tribune, Hatirjheel police station Sub-Inspector (SI) Idris Ali said that they attended the body after it was brought to the hospital. 

“Zahanul’s family claimed that he had committed suicide. No case has been filed over the incident yet,” the police official said, adding that the police would be able to say more about the actual cause of death following the autopsy report.

“Zahanul’s wife told us that he worked for the DGHS and was made OSD in 2009. She said that the deceased stopped receiving any salary for the last 10 months,” Idris told this newspaper. 

Zahanul’s wife Farhana could not be reached over the phone for her comments.

Quoting Farhana, Idris also said that Zahanul had been in debt and did not have any savings. “He couldn’t even ask for help out of hesitation.”

When asked about why he was made OSD, the police official said: “We don’t know.” 

Meanwhile, the deceased’s brother Zahirul Alim claimed that Zahanul was physically ill.

Contacted following the incident, DGHS Additional Director General (ADG) Nasima Sultana said that she was unaware of the incident. She failed to recognize Zahanul.

When asked why Zahanul had stopped getting his salary, which is a violation of the provisions for government officials made OSD, the DGHS ADG declined to make any comments.

According to the Ministry of Public Administration, OSD officials receive their monthly salaries, allowances, cars and all other facilities associated with their post, but have no duties or responsibilities to carry out.

Making a government official OSD is quite a common phenomenon in Bangladesh and it mostly serves as a punishment for officers who fail to do their duties properly.

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