- Authorities say they have been unable to trace the producers to collect the dues
- An official of BFDC's accounts department, however, said the arrears have not been recovered due to negligence
- The film producers were sent letters at different times asking them to pay their dues but they did not respond
Some 41 producers – who made films using equipment and other facilities of the Bangladesh Film Development Corporation (BFDC) from 1996 to 2011 – still owe payment of around Tk6 crore, according to BFDC's accounts department.
Authorities say they have been unable to trace the producers to collect the bill. Even after many of the films that these producers made received censorship certificates, they were not released.
The accounts department of BFDC said these producers did not pay Tk5 crore 54 lakh 39 thousand for equipment and other costs.
However, an official of BFDC's accounts department told The Business Standard that the arrears have not been recovered so far due to the negligence of the financially-strapped organisation.
According to BFDC, 41 film producers were sent letters at different times to pay their dues but they did not respond. Several letters have also been returned to the FDC as the addresses that some of the producers gave were incorrect.
According to BFDC, a film named "E Lorai Bachar Lorai," made by Jambus Films, has the highest amount due of around Tk20 lakh five thousand. The producer of the film is Tasnim Jahan Khan. The film received censorship clearance in July 2006.
Idris Chowkidar, the producer of the film "Antare Premer Agun," made by Riya Avi Films, owes around Tk6 lakh 69 thousand. The film received censorship clearance in 2006.
According to BFDC sources, some of the producers lost interest in the films that they wanted to make for some unknown reasons. As a result, after a while, they did not show much interest in making and releasing the films.
A number of producers disappeared before the films were completed. Though they came back later to finish the films, the films were not released, the sources added.
Hemayet Hossain, BFDC's accounting officer, told The Business Standard, "Despite our best efforts, we have not been able to recover a single penny of the money due. We filed a case against two-three directors-producers due to long delay in payment, but that did not work either."
He also said, "We have not given up the hope to recover the money. We are continuing our efforts."
BFDC Law Officer Hossainul Kabib was contacted to know the latest status of the cases but the call was not received. A text message to his number has also gone unanswered.
Meanwhile, during the tenure of Amir Hossain, the former managing director of BFDC, a six-member policy-making board was formed to collect the arrears. But they could not play any role in recovering the money. However, the current managing director has also formed another new committee in this regard.
Nuzhat Yasmin, managing director of BFDC, said, "This is a very old issue. Our new committee is working to recover the money. Let us see how much can be done."