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Opinion | May 24, 2009

Tale of Nobel laureate’s continuous fraud

Dr. Muhammed Yunus is by now known in the entire world as the 'pioneer' of micro credit, for which he got Nobel Peace prize few years back. Undoubtedly this was the time of pride and celebration for the entire country. Dr. Yunus enjoys high esteemed in the international arena and maintains close connections with a number of global leaders including Secretary of State of United States, Hillary Clinton. In brief, Dr. Yunus is truly a very high profile individual.

But, just on current week, a popular Bangla weekly magazine named Shaptahik 2000, which is owned by Daily Star Publication conglomerate, has brought Dr. Yunus in their cover story titled 'Huge business of Micro Credit'.

According to this newsmagazine Grameen Bank charges 30-40 per cent annual interest from its borrowers and it has established a kind of well organized network in Bangladesh for putting pressure on the borrowers in collecting weekly interest on the borrowed amount. It was even reported that, for year, Grameen Bank were taking tin made house, cattle and other valuables including ornaments from the borrowers when they failed to pay even a single installment of the interest. In rural areas in Bangladesh, Grameen Bank is a name of modern day's blood sucker and Dr. Yunus as the captain of the team.

But, the most notorious fraud of Dr. Yunus and his Grameen Bank has been documentarily proved by the vernacular weekly.

For years, Grameen Bank has been showing the name of their first borrower Sufia Begum who belonged to Jobra village, where from Dr. Yunus hails. According to propaganda of Grameen Bank, Sufi became rich after borrowing money from Grameen Bank and has built a two storied modern house in the village. Photograph of the building was always shown by Dr. Yunus and his Grameen Bank.

But on investigation, it was found that, Sufia Begum died in 1998 due to extreme poverty and local people had to collect donations for her funeral and burial. One of her grand daughters died few years back due to poverty. In the almost broken hut of Sufia Begum, her two daughters named Halima [55] and Nur Nahar [50] lives with daily hunger and poverty.

The house, which is shown by Dr. Yunus and Grameen Bank as Sufia's is actually owned by one Jabel Hussain who lives in Dubai [United Arab Emirates]. Jabel Hussain has instructed his relatives in Bangladesh to sue Dr. Yunus and Grameen bank if his house is ever shown as Sufia's in future.

Talking to reporters Jabel Hussain said, “Dr. Yunus is a fraud. How he managed to get the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize? This prize should be immediately withdrawn from this monster”.

Dr. Muhammed Yunus gave TK. 20 [US$ 0.30] to Sufia Begum Years back as loan with the condition of returning in time with interest. Sufia Begum returned that money and got second loan of Tk. 500 from Yunus. She was so excited that spread the news in the entire village. This was the beginning of Grammen Bank concept. But, most of the borrowers, who took money from Dr. Yunus, gradually turned poor to poorest as they were compelled to pay regular interests. In Jobra village alone, a large number of villagers have already been turned into pauper by Dr. Yunus and his Grameen Bank.

Uday Kumar Barua, a resident of Jobra village told Shaptahik 2000 that, even a single person in the Jobra village was not benefited by Dr. Yunus. Most of the borrowers turned completely pauper and they even had to sell their homes for paying the loan interest and left the village. Many of them even ended up as baggers.

Even after having Hillary Clinton in one of the Grameen bank's project at Rishi Palli at Moshihati, shrewd Yunus initiated a project named 'Hillary Adarsha' [Hillary Model] and started distributing loans to the locals. Although Hillary Clinton was given assurance of providing soft-term loan to the poor villagers, in reality, they [the villagers] were to pay 30-40 per cent interest.

In years after the visit of Hillary Clinto, the entire village turned into a land of horror. Extreme poverty due to high interest charged by Dr. Yunus pushed them towards starvation, poverty and other social problems. Child marriage is very common in that village. A large number of females from the village ended up in local and neighboring brothels, which were virtually sold by parents due to poverty.

Now, Hillary Model village has turned into a big joke for the locals and Bangladeshi people. But, Dr. Yunus very tactfully checks the spread of this news in national and international media. Local newspapers are purchased with the heavy advertisements of Grameen Phone, Grameen Bank and other commercial ventures of this fraud Nobel Laureate.

A fraud like Dr. Yunus proudly tells everyone that Hillary Clinton is his friend. He also mentions names of many such highly esteemed people. But, surely it is time for those important global figures to inquire about the above facts of fraud by this Nobel Laureate. It is even time for Nobel Peace Prize committee to re-assess if their giving prize to this man was justified.

Journalist, Columnist, Author & Peace Activist
Skype: shoaibnoca
Editor & Publisher, Weekly Blitz

PEN USA Freedom to Write Award 2005; AJC Moral Courage Award 2006

Key to the Englewood City, NJ, USA [Highest Honor] 2007; Monaco Media Award, 2007

Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury
Salah Uddin Shoaib Choudhury, © 2009

This author has authored 14 publications on Modern Ghana.
Author column: SalahUddinShoaibChoudhury

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