Cabinet clears draft of BMDA Law, 2017

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Dhaka, November 27: The cabinet on Monday approved in principle the draft of “The Barind Multipurpose Development Authority (BMDA) Law, 2017” aimed at bringing the organisation under a legal structure, reports BSS.

The approval came at a regular cabinet meeting held at the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) this morning with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.

Briefing reporters after the meeting at the secretariat in the afternoon, Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam said the BMDA has so far been running by a resolution as there is no law in this regard. “The organisation is now being operated by a government resolution,” he said.

The cabinet secretary said an authority is a statutory body which is run by a law. “In that consideration, the draft law has been placed in the cabinet to turn the resolution into a law, he added.

The cabinet secretary said according to the draft law, entire Rajshahi and Rangpur divisions would now come under the BMDA instead of only greater Rajshahi, Bogra, Rangpur and Dinajpur districts as mentioned in the existing resolution.

The area of the BMDA has been expanded considering the expansion of works of the authority, Alam said, adding the BMDA has been clearly defined in the draft law which was absent in the existing resolution.

About the structure of the BMDA, he said, there will be an Advisory Council headed by the Agriculture Minister that will have the responsibility for making policy.

Other members of the council will be made from 17 different categories including local parliament members, secretaries of the ministries of Finance, Agriculture, Environment, Power and Energy and Water Resources and the BMDA Chairman, the BADC Chairman, and Divisional Commissioners of Rajshahi and Rangpur Divisions.

The cabinet secretary said there will also be an 11-member board of directors with Chairman of the BMDA as its Chairman, while a new post named “Secretary” for the BMDA has been proposed.

About the function of the BMDA, he said like other authorities, it would accomplish normal responsibilities like giving policy guidelines, raising funds after taking approval of the government.

Besides, it will also maintain accounts of annual income and expenses, submit annual financial report to the government within three months after the end of a financial year. He said the Advisory Council will sit in a meeting at least once in every year, while the board will sit at least once in every three months.