DHAKA: Biman Bangladesh Airlines had renewed the accord with Kabo Airlines on chartering an airplane bypassing the rules and regulations of the institution, competent sources said when asked about reasons for a high-level row over the issue.
They pointed out that the deal, signed during the Hajj in 2008, had no provision for renewal.
However, the agreement was renewed thrice even after the expiry of the first agreement, said the sources.
A tug-of-war between the Civil Aviation Minister and the Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Civil Aviation Ministry over the lease of a carrier from the Kabo Airlines under the renewed deal appalled all.
Moreover, the Biman had hired the airplane from Kabo without any tender.
Later, the Biman authorities renewed the accord for six months in the first phase and then twice for two months.
An official of Biman, wishing anonymity, said the leasing modality broke all rules and regulations governing public procurement.
However, Air Vice-Marshal (retd) Jamal Uddin, chairman of the Biman company, denied the allegations.
"When it was agreed, there was no tender process involved. Then, why a tender should be required now?” he asked.
The retired air-force chief claimed that the Biman did not violate any rules. “The agreement was renewed through the Ministry as per rules.”
When contacted, Civil Aviation and Tourism Minister GM Quader said, "We did not renew the lease when we came to know about the matter."
Aviation expert Quazi Wahidul Alam told banglanews24.com.bd that Biman has no rule for renewing the agreement.
“Any agreement should be extended following tender procedures as Biman is a public limited company, which will make it cost-effective,” he said.
The agreement with the Nigerian airline, Kabo, expired on June 30.
BDST: 1955 HRS, AUGUST 22, 2010