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The Financial Express

Stock market tribunal sits almost idle

Mohammad Mufazzal | Published: February 24, 2020 10:39:28 | Updated: February 25, 2020 12:03:07


Stock market tribunal sits almost idle

The special tribunal on capital market has been sitting almost 'idle' for around 18 months in the absence of stock market-related cases in hand.

The activities of the tribunal came almost to a halt after May, 2018 as the capital market-related cases were not transferred here from the lower court and the High Court (HC).

"As a petitioner, the securities regulator should play an active role for transferring the cases from the HC and lower court to the tribunal to keep it functional," a tribunal source said preferring anonymity.

A total of 25 cases, including some related to the 1996 stock-market scam, so far were transferred to the tribunal for hearing. On completion of trial, the tribunal earlier delivered verdicts in six cases.

A tribunal source said last week that out of 25 cases, 11 were settled, 10 were stayed by the HC, two again were sent back to the previous lower court and the remaining two were quashed.

Presently, the officials of the tribunal come to office on a regular basis but in most of the days they have no job in absence of cases.

Apart from salaries for two permanent officials, the government has to bear the cost of around Tk 0.16 million per month for floor rent and outsourcing of services.

When asked, a senior official of the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) said they were trying to transfer the cases to the tribunal from other courts.

"Most of the cases were stayed by the HC, while two other cases are in the lower court. We are alerting our lawyers to transferring the cases to the tribunal," the BSEC official said.

He said some complexities caused delay in transferring the cases to the tribunal.

The government formed the special tribunal in 2012 in line with the Sub-section (1) of the Section 25 (B) of the Securities and Exchange Ordinance-1969, for quick disposal of the capital market-related cases filed under the Securities and Exchange Ordinance, 1969.

The tribunal held last hearing on the case of Olympic Industries in August, 2018, the tribunal source said.

The only one case of Olympic Industries was also stayed for six months by the HC following a plea of the petitioner-BSEC.

Advocate Masud Rana, a lawyer of the securities regulator, said the securities regulator sought stay order on the case of Olympic Industries as the respondent is abroad.

After establishment, the tribunal in its maiden verdict jailed Mahbub Sarwar on August 03, 2015, for two years as he was found guilty of manipulating stock prices through social networking sites in 2010.

Later, the tribunal jailed and acquitted different businesses and individuals on completion of hearing in some cases.

The first and the second judge of the tribunal were transferred to other courts.

Presently, Hasina Roushon Jahan is the judge of the tribunal set up in the building of Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation in the capital.

mufazzal.fe@gmail.com

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