Wednesday, August 23, 2017 | ePaper

Our diplomats must not earn bad name for the country

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ONCE again another of our diplomats has drawn severe criticism abroad and in the international news media. According to the New York City prosecutor, Bangladesh's Deputy Consul General in New York was indicted on Monday on charges of labour trafficking and assault for forcing his servant to work without pay by showing threats and intimidation. If the charges are, however, proven to be true then it was unexpected and shocking from a very important public office holder representing the country abroad. Furthermore, other news reports suggests that the defendant allegedly took his passport and required the servant to work 18 hours a day in spite of the servant having a contract which had outlined his compensation in details. However, we expect the judge to deliver its due verdict judiciously. Just last year, a Manhattan federal judge declared the then Bangladeshi Consul General in New York and his wife to be in default for ignoring a lawsuit by a former domestic worker who claimed they forced him to work without pay in slavery-like conditions. On one side these acts are inhuman and blatant display of abusing official power.
What's surprising is that - after working for about 13 months the servant had appeared with these allegations. Why did he not raise this issue earlier? Nevertheless, this type of allegations seriously dents the international image of a country. We have also seen how India's Deputy Consul General in New York was arrested on similar charges in 2013 which eventually led to the diplomat's arrest causing a major diplomatic rift between India and the United States. With the most unpredictable man in charge of the White House at the moment, we don't expect the same to happen in our case.
Our Foreign Ministry should carry out its own investigation. In the USA, no case against diplomat is taken lightly. Allegations are mean and most damaging.   

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