BB governor Atiur quits; PM calls it courageous step

Embattled Bangladesh Bank governor Atiur Rahman on Tuesday quit amid a huge row over the heist of $101 million from the Bangladesh Bank’s account with the US federal reserves.
The governor’s resignation came following his meeting with the prime minister at her office, according to the PMO press wing.
Hours after the resignation, Atiur said he himself stepped down to protect the central bank’s image he built over the last seven years, United News of Bangladesh reports.
‘I resigned on my own like a hero to save the Bangladesh Bank’s image I built over the last seven years,’ he told reporters at a press briefing at his Gulshan residence.
PM’s press secretary Ihsanul Karim said Atiur Rahman submitted his resignation after a meeting with prime minister Sheikh Hasina in the morning following the unexpected incident (money heist).
Briefing reporters at the Prime Minister’s Office, he said after accepting the resignation letter of Atiur, the prime minister termed his step a courageous one. ‘This will remain as a rare example of his moral strength and honesty,’ she said.
Recalling his contributions to the country’s economic development, Hasina said Bangladesh’s reserve saw a remarkable rise and the banking sector became more dynamic during the tenure of Atiur Rahman.
Besides, the prime minister said necessary actions will be taken against Bangladesh Bank officials responsible for the heist of $101 million from the central bank’s account with the US federal reserves through hacking its website under the Cyber Crime Act, Ihsanul said.
PM’s deputy press secretary Mamun-or-Rashid was present at the press briefing.
Earlier talking to reporters at his official residence in the morning, Atiur said he was ready to resign if the prime minister asked him to do so.
He talked to the media first about the cyber theft since his return from India on Monday.
Defending himself for not informing the finance minister about the money heist, he said he took some time since it was like a ‘terrorist attack’ on the country’s banking sector after the ATM fraud.
‘But whatever I did, I did in the interest of the country as I didn’t want the incident to create any panic in the banking sector,’ he added.
Meanwhile, the government has decided to appoint ex-finance secretary Fazle Kabir as new governor of the Bangladesh Bank.
Fazle Kabir, chairman of the board of directors of Sonali Bank Limited, is now in New York. He will return home on March 18.

source : the new age

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