Industry Desk: Bangladesh bank has protested the handing of the operation of ‘Nagad’ – the digital financial service of the department of post, to private organisation, Third Web Technologies Ltd.
Nagad began operation on March 26 and the number of subscribers has exceeded 1.6 million. Though this has been started as a mobile banking service, it’s not available at post offices of the country.
Sub post master of Mirpur post office, Muhammad Hannan said, “We do not have the operation of Nagad here; agents have been given the responsibility and they are operating it.”
The web site of Nagad identifies Syed Mohammad Kamal as chairman and Tanvir A Mishuk as MD.
Public relations head of Third Web Technologies, Solaiman Shukhon, says: “We have a licencing partnership with the department of post and therefore, Nagad will be managed by us.”
DG of the department of post, Sudhangshu Shekhar Bhadra, observes: “we have a revenue sharing agreement with Third Web; they will operate it. Nagad is not a separate organisation; it’s a service of the department of post.”
Nagad does not have an MD, if the site carries such a post then it’s an error and we have asked for the mistake to be rectified, added the DG.
“Of the total profit, post department will get 51 per cent while Third Web 49 per cent. But this is also bound by a time frame, after which we will be able to take full control of Nagad.”
Meanwhile, the finance division, Bangladesh Bank and the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority, BIDA, have expressed their disapproval at Nagad’s operation without Bangladesh Bank approval.
A letter signed by Leela Rashid, DG of the payment systems of Bangladesh Bank, said that to provide financial services other than money order or life insurance, permission has to be obtained from Bangladesh Bank.
The letter further added that if the department of post wants to work with another institution then that company has to be made into a subsidiary company, with 51 per cent share for the ministry of post.
A letter from the finance ministry to the secretary of post and telecommunications states that if Nagad is not under the monitoring of Bangladesh Bank, then monitoring of all such payment systems will become complex.
Bangladesh Bank’s spokesperson, Md Serajul Islam, says: “Nagad is running without the bank’s approval; a dialogue is on with the department of post over the issue.”
DG of the department of post, Sudhangshu Shekhar Bhadra, comments: “the post department is run by the post office law of 1898; as per law, post department can operate banking services, postal life insurance and remittance transfer service. All financial products of the department are as per existing law.”
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