Bangladesh is marching forward through Information and Communications Technology (ICT). Gradually our Govt. Non-govt. Financial and Commercial organizations are being developed through Automation system. Recently a program namely ‘ICT and Bangladesh’, scripted, planed and directed by Raju Alim is broadcast. The program is hosted by the famous corporate personality Rubaba Dowla and the guests were Helaluddin Ahmed, Divisional Commissioner, Dhaka; Istiak Ahmed Chowdhury, Managing Director, Trust Bank Limited and Arfan Ali, Managing Director, Bank Asia. The interview is written by- Reza Khan.
Question : We know that Trust Bank is in Digitized process from the very beginning. Would you please say something?
Istiak : Banking sector is now a Digitalized sector in Bangladesh. ICT is using in everywhere. We have started Online Banking, Internet Banking and Banking through SMS. We have successfully launched our Online Banking. Our clients withdraw their money from any branches of our Bank. Rather they can get the service using Debit and Credit card. A client can check his Account Balance and Balance can be transferred from home through Internet Service though the transferred services are very limited now. Internet Banking is very popular in whole world. We are also trying to make this service popular in our country. In 1977, when I joined in banking sector, there was no IT use in our country. In that time we maintained ledger and using token for Banking. But now the using of ICT in banking sector is a silent revolution.
Question : Mr. Arfan Ali here is a question to you that you have launched a very interesting product recently that is a Debit Card for farmers. I think this a part of ICT. Please say something…
Arfan Ali : Everybody should come forth and help for developing the country through using ICT in Banking Sector. There have been taking many initiatives under Bangladesh Bank. We welcome warmly them for this initiative. This is very positive that Bangladesh Bank is working huge in Automation System. We are beneficiary now for National Payment ship. Now we are working for our Farmers. As farmers are the backbone of our finance so we have launched Farmers Card for them. 1 Lac ten thousand farmers are associated with this program. We have added their mobile application with their Bank Account. We have added Master Card with their Debit Card as if farmers can buy any kind of Agricultural Input. They can withdraw their moneyfrom any Bank and from our ATM booth and its number is approximate Six thousand and more. Many NGO are helping us on opening their Bank Account.
Question : Service charge is increasing for developing Automation system which is charging from the account holders. How will you manage this matter?
Arfan Ali : This is rational for a better service. The people of our country are very decent and good. They receive warmly anything that is good and positive mostly in case of services. So if we ensure better services, customer will pay charges. But bank cannot charges more if they wish. This is strictly prohibited in the law of Banking.
Question : You are working in the root. So how will you be connected in Digitization?
Helaluddin : Our Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has declared that she wants to build the country as Digital Bangladesh and to fulfill this mission every administration is working. They have talked only in banking. It’s okay because they are from banking sector. They know very well finance but we work in field and here we have a huge labor to pay. A too I division and the secretariat of Ministry works with us. I would like to give a description on our working. Now our every District, Upazilla and even Union Parishad is under ICT. We have made mostly 5000 Uni-Digital Centre all over the country and 9 hundred in Dhaka Division. They also complete their banking from these Centers. Here they pay their electricity bill. Here we have two entrepreneurs, one is male and the other is female. They are not payee by the Government. We have accounted that many of them earn more than 70000 BDT. At least they earn 20000 BDT every month. They are well and good without salary.
Question : Digital Center is now in every Union. Do the common people trust this System?
Helaluddin : If anyone comes in the Commissioner’s office from Keranigonj, Dohar, Dhampur or anywhere of the country that is very problematic for the person who will come but if he/she can solve his/her problem from home that’s the positive result of Uni-Digital Centre. This is happening widely. Villagers do not come in the capital city nowadays for the problem that they can solve from their village. So I think Uni-Digital Centre is being popular in village.
Question : Trust Bank is backed by Army Welfare Trust of Bangladesh Army. Army, RAB, BGB gets their salary from Trust Bank. You are always advance in every sector. So how much do you use IT in banking?
Istiak : Trust Bank Limited is a private commercial bank established in 1999 in Bangladesh. Yes, it is backed by Army Welfare Trust of Bangladesh Army. Trust Bank is an Institution. Its 60% share is of Welfare. Air force, RAB, BGB, Coast Guard- everyone gets their salary on Debit Card.
A result-driven and self-motivated person with a proven ability to develop and lead management teams in order to maximize the Bank’s operational efficiency. He has a capacity of fostering the Bank’s strategic alliances with different stakeholders.
He is the Championed Agent Banking operation in Bangladesh with a view to serve a wide range of unbanked and underserved people all over the country by providing banking and financial services.
Provided banking solution and technical assistance to digitalize Ektee Bari Ektee Khamar (EBEK) project where 2.10 million beneficiaries are served by him.
He is very much responsible to guide a dedicated team of workforce towards achieving the business targets & profit, maintaining fair business practices, maintaining high degree of customer satisfaction and creating an atmosphere where people work for pleasure. Acting as Supervisor of Agent Banking Division, ICT Division, ADC Department, EBEK Project, Cards Division
He is acting as member of Management Committee (MANCOM), Asset Liability Management Committee (ALCO), Executive Risk Management Committee (ERMC), Trustee Boards of Provident Fund/Gratuity Fund etc., Chairman of Management Reporting System (MRS), Chairman of Credit Committee (SMR) and Director of Bank Asia Securities Limited.
He was in Hanil Bank (Now Woori Bank of South Korea) August 08, 1996 to September 12, 1999, Arab Bangladesh Bank Limitedfrom May 02, 1991 to August 07, 1996.
Now this man is the Managing Director of Bank Asia.
Mr. Ishtiaque Ahmed Chowdhury Managing Director & CEO Trust Bank Limited, was appointed as Managing Director & CEO of Trust Bank Limited on February 04, 2013. He was in current-charge of the office of the Managing Director from December 12, 2012 to February 03, 2013. Prior to assuming this office, he served the Bank as Deputy Managing Director since 2005.
After completing B.A. (Hons) M.A. in Political Science from University of Dhaka in 1976, he started his career with Rupali Bank Limited as Probationary Officer in 1977. He had also studied LLB from Dhaka University. Mr. Chowdhury gained grounded experiences in many field ranges from rural banking, SME banking, wholesale banking and client acquisition. Mr. Chowdhury spent half of his career time in AB Bank Limited, first private commercial bank of the country, through 1984 to 2002.
Over the last 38 years, Mr Chowdhury’s career evolved as a technically sound banker with adequate exposure in E-Commerce business, expand territory of the bank introducing digital salary for Bangladesh Army, Bangladesh Navy, Coast Guard and RAB. The introduction of “Trust Bank Mobile Money” has open up a threshold of vigorous prospect for the socio-economic growth and the development of the country. “Trust Bank Mobile Money” is bringing unbanked population into banking network through low cost, technology based better service delivery and diversified product. He believes in financial inclusive banking and has always put his upmost effort to bring banking services to the doorstep of people at large. He has extensive planning to introduce Agent Banking within a short period of time. Under his direct supervision Trust Bank introduced Debit Card and formed Card Division in December 2005. During Mr. Chowdhury’s time, technological advancement transpired from Online Centralized Banking to roll out of Mobile Banking in 2010. He kept pace with the contemporary international standard and acquired VISA membership in 2007. He gradually launched various products of Credit Card and in last few years he had successfully able to include the bill collection of BRTA, Passport, NID, WASA, DESCO, DPDC and other utility services. He has also ensured bank’s interconnectivity with Bangladesh Bank associated to National Payment Switch Bangladesh (NPSB), Bangladesh Automated Clearing House (BACH), Real time Gross Settlement (RTGS) and SWIFT system. He has also proven to be an effective team leader ensuring coherent business functional areas and exploring technology based service delivery channels.
Mr. Helaluddin Ahmed is the Dhaka Divisional Commissioner. He becomes BCS Cadre in 1985 batch in Administration and now he is an Additional Secretary of the Government.
Helaluddin Ahmed born in 23rd May in 1963 in Cox’s Bazar. In 1988 at 15th February he joined as an Assistant Commissioner, BCS Administration and becomes the Dhaka Divisional Commissioner in 05th May 2016.
In 1984 he becomes graduate in Zoology from Chittagong University and later his post-graduation. He was on duty in many important post of the Government at many time. In 1988 he joined in Kishoregonj District as an Assistant Commissioner. Later in Sylhet; as an Upozilla Magistrate in Lama, Bandarban; Additional Magistrate in Rangamati. He joined as a UNO in Hathajari, Chittagong; Purbadhola, Netrakona; Additional District Magistrate in Habigonj and in many more post of the Government.
Helaluddin Ahmed has visited many a country like- Japan, China, Singapore, Thailand, India, Qatar, Bhutan, Bahrain, Vietnam, Malaysiaand America and so on.