Dr Sabrina Arif Chowdhury, chairman of JKG Health Care, has confessed that she knew about the Covid-19 test scam by her husband Ariful Haque Chowdhury, JKG's chief executive officer.
She also claimed that she informed the top official of the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) about the fake test certificates.
In light of her statement, the Detective Branch (DB) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police, investigating authority of the case, now mulls quizzing the top officials of the DGHS for their alleged negligence regarding the issue.
Quoting Sabrina, sources at the DB told The Business Standard that after becoming aware of the scam, she went to the DGHS's office in Mohakhali several times and informed DGHS Director General Prof Dr Abul Kalam Azad and Additional Director General Nasima Sultana about the irregularities regarding the test reports.
But unfortunately they did not pay heed to the fact. Rather they suggested that it was not the proper time for making such claims, Sabrina told the interrogators.
"If you find out CCTV footage of at least 10 days prior to Ariful's arrest, you can find me there at the DGHS office," she claimed to the DB.
During cross interrogation of Sabrina and Ariful on Wednesday evening at the DB office on Minto road, she also said her life was ruined just because of her husband's greed and dishonesty.
"I am a doctor who took oath to serve the nation, but now I'm behind bars and facing remand. All of this happened because of Arif," she added.
Meanwhile, DB's Tejgaon Division Deputy Commissioner Golam Mostafa Rasel told the Business Standard that they were getting information about several people's involvement in the scam.
He said there are two aspects of the case – fraud and negligence.
Asked if they found any negligence on the part of the DGHS, the DB official replied that they are still in the primary stage of the investigation and gathering information and evidence.
"It is not the proper time for revealing sensitive information," he added.
The DB official said they have sought a seven-day remand for Sabrina to question her further about the allegations.
Meanwhile, DGHS Additional Director General Nasima Sultana claimed that Sabrina's claim is a complete lie.
"Yes, I can remember she came to me once before her husband was arrested and wanted suggestions over his family matters. She also claimed that her husband beat her up and she left for her paternal residence. But, I cannot remember the exact time," she added.
Nasima Sultana also termed Sabrina's attire as "ultramodern" and said that did not suit her.
According to the DB sources, Sabrina met the director general and additional director general of the DGHS at least two weeks before her husband's arrest. Then she filed a general diary claiming that her husband beat her up. After that she left for her paternal home because apparently she could not tolerate the scam anymore.
Another additional deputy commissioner of DB Tejgaon Division told the Business Standard that DGHS Director General Prof Dr Abul Kalam Azad gave approval for Covid-19 testing at the JKG Health Care just weeks before Ariful's arrest, when criticism arose and several complaints were lodged regarding test scam.
Prof Dr Abul Klam Azad refused to make any comment regarding the matter.
The Detective Branch is going to cross interrogate the accused Sabrina Arif Chowdhury and her husband Ariful Haque Chowdhury again over the matter.
On Thursday DB Additional Commissioner Abdul Baten told the media that the court had granted four-day remand for Arif.