Rajshahi, July 10 (V7N)- In February of last year, a scientific officer and a driver at the BCSIR laboratory in Rajshahi filed accusations against one another in the director's office, following a brief altercation caused by falling trees. The information they disclosed came from their charges regarding a huge karoi tree in front of the accounting department and the illicit selling of trees from the laboratory's khair plantation. The surprising revelation that 33 newly planted trees worth TK 500,000, were erroneously declared dead and fallen and sold for Tk 80,000, was the result of multiple authorities working together.
According to sources from the Bangladesh Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (BCSIR), the Forest Department is in charge of figuring out how valuable trees are in any government facility. However, prior to the trees at the Rajshahi laboratory being chopped down, no such consultation was requested.
On August 16, of last year, it was disclosed that the BCSIR had issued a call for bids to clear 33 trees, including mango, jackfruit, khair, neem, karoi, shimul, and krishnachura trees. These trees had been reported to be dead or to have fallen as a result of storms. On August 23, Saba Trading Corporation, one of numerous contractors, won the contract for a mere Tk 80,150.
Driver Hafiz was the subject of a complaint against him at the director's office on February 11 by Scientific Officer Md. Ariful Islam for his unapproved behaviour and unruly conduct in the residential area. Hafiz's report to the director's office on February 12 revealed the enormous karoi tree in front of the accounting department and the illicit selling of trees from the khair plantation.
Further information from sources indicated that a number of Rajshahi laboratory officials from several departments had established a bastion for wrongdoing and corruption. They are accused of embezzling lakhs of Taka by increasing the price of cultivating sugarcane, mustard and maize. Every night, authorities go together with Shafiqul and Iqbal, the heads of the contractors' syndicate. 
The government treasury pays for the hiring of daily labourers for services like cooking, and some officials live in the guest home for years for a modest price. The allocation committee's arbitrary single-room allocations, which disregarded the housing allocation guidelines, have cost BCSIR crores of Taka in lost revenue.
The owner of Saba Trading Corporation, Md. Iqbal Hossain, said that the work order merely called for the removal of the dead trees that the authorities had designated.
Acting Director of BCSIR Dr. Md. Selim Khan denied the accusations, calling them without merit. He said that the work order was issued in compliance with the rules for removing fallen and dead trees brought down by storms. He denied any illegal sale of trees from the khair plantation and the large karoi tree in front of the accounts section.