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Fraternity without borders: Dr. Yunus’s accession is questionable

Fraternity without borders: Dr. Yunus’s accession is questionable


Dr. Yunus has left Dhaka to address the 2nd Meeting on Human Fraternity at the invitation of Fondazione Fratelli Tutti on May 9. It is to be noted that it is known that he will return to the country on May 17 from Paris with Emirates Airlines. About 30 Nobel Peace Prize winners were invited to attend the meeting. Dr. Yunus’s inclusion is quite rightly questionable for a number of reasons.

He is already a questionable and controversial figure due to the ongoing fund embezzlement case against him in the Bangladesh court, where he has become the chairman of Grameen Bank and the institutions that are created with Grameen Bank’s funds. The question naturally arises here about how Dr. Yunus was invited. Yunus does not have the morals to attend such a meeting or conference. We know that he never protested the brutal and barbaric attacks on Gazans in Palestine. Rather, he has always been singing the praises of the United States. Although the United States is directly involved in many activities against humanity, The position of Yunus is in their favor. Inviting such a controversial figure to be the keynote speaker at the Round Table Conference on Humanities has naturally raised questions.

How does a person accused of violating labor laws become the keynote speaker at the Peace and Humanity Conference? His activities so far prove that he is by no means a pacifist. Naturally, Dr. said in the conference. Before inviting Yunus, it was necessary to consider whether his position was in favor of peace. He won the Nobel Peace Prize but was never seen speaking out for the neglected and oppressed people of the world. Rather, he exploited the poor in the name of establishing Grameen Bank.

Grameen Bank, a government-owned institution in Bangladesh, was the brainchild of Dr. Muhammad Yunus. His achievement of winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 was a moment of pride for the nation. However, his journey was not without its share of controversies. The political landscape of Bangladesh was undergoing significant changes, and Dr. Yunus found himself at the forefront of these discussions. His influence and involvement in politics raised eyebrows and sparked debates.

In a special interview on March 2 given to BBC Bangla, Yunus asked, “I will have to pay for the incident for ten weeks for the rest of my life.” He claimed that he did not take over as head of the government despite the request of the army-backed (Moin-u-Ahmed) government of 1/11, basically digging into the logic of the charges leveled against him in the past. Later, he initiated opening a political party at everyone’s request. He moved out within ten weeks. He said the initiative to form his political party ‘Nagarik Shakti’ during the army-backed caretaker government in Bangladesh in 2007 was a mistake. However, the question is whether that is just one of his mistakes.

Due to various incidents, an open letter was also published as an advertisement in the international media, the Washington Post, in March last year. There, 40 world leaders wrote to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. In 2011, when Yunus was asked to resign as MD of the bank in violation of the country’s retirement laws and was invited to serve as ‘Advisor Emeritus,’ he refused and sued the government.

Dr. Yunus’s influence extends far beyond the borders of Bangladesh. His close ties with former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Democratic Party have been the subject of much discussion. His alleged role in preventing the World Bank from disbursing a loan for the Padma Bridge in Bangladesh, with the help of the US government, underscores his international influence. These actions have not gone unnoticed and have raised serious questions about his integrity and the ethics of his operations.

The allegations of corruption and financial irregularities against Dr. Yunus and the institutions he founded are severe and warrant attention. A documentary titled ‘The Small Debt Trap’ by Danish filmmaker Tom Heinemann sheds light on these allegations. It accuses Dr. Yunus of diverting over $100 million from Grameen Bank to another organization, Grameen Kalyan, in 1996. Initially given by several European countries, this money was intended for Grameen Bank’s use, but it was allegedly misused.

During the making of the documentary film, its creator traveled for six months. Unable to take the statement of Yunus, he also wrote a letter to the channel authority to not broadcast the report. Donor groups have been giving grants and loans to Grameen Bank since its inception. The Social Venture Capital Fund (SVCF) is formed if all the grant money is spent on something other than the state and people. On October 7, 1992, a decision was taken to form a separate institution with that fund. A limited company named ‘Grameen Fund’ was formed in 1994. 49.10 crores of those funds were transferred to it. So, there was an attempt to remove it by showing Grameen Bank and bringing money abroad.

Interestingly, Grameen Kalyan and Grameen Fund are formed with the money of Grameen Bank and through the decision of the board meeting. All the institutions formed through these two institutions are legally affiliated with Grameen Bank. However, till 2020, there are representatives of Grameen Bank on the Board of Directors of Grameen Fund and Grameen Kalyan, but from 2021, these two institutions.

Thinking of him as a washed-up tulsi leaf as a Nobel laureate is absurd. Aung San Suu Kyi’s state court in neighboring Myanmar has proven that being a Nobel laureate does not mean that she is above the law and that being a Nobel laureate does not mean that she is incapable of committing crimes by jailing Aung San Suu Kyi for various crimes. The International Criminal Court is also investigating allegations of genocide against Suu Kyi. Former President Trump has been and is currently being tried in US courts. In the past, the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Dominique Strauss-Kahn, was tried in that country on rape charges. The trial of former French President Nicolas Sarkozy proves that being a big man does not mean he is innocent or above justice.

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