Muhammad Yunus stole US$100 million of Norwegian grant money


While the world until now knows Muhammad Yunus as a noble individual and savior of poor, in reality he not only is a pathological liar and extremely greedy individual, according to documents obtained by Blitz from internationally known investigative journalist Tom Heinemann, the half-Nobel Prize laureate Yunus also is a thief who did not hesitate in stealing US$100 million from the Norwegian grant that actually was sent to Grameen Bank for using in poverty alleviation.

According to Tom Heinemann, in 1996, Muhammad Yunus established a new company named Grameen Kalyan, which is exclusively controlled by himself. Reason behind secretly forming this company had multiple reason. First of all, Grameen Bank’s tax exemption ended in 1998 and it was impossible for Yunus in availing tax-free privileges. Another reason was – Yunus wanted to secretly steal millions of dollars of grant money from Grameen Bank and transfer to his exclusively-controlled Grameen Kalyan and few more companies.

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Muhammad Yunus discreetly transferred more than US$100 million from Grameen Bank to his new company – Grameen Kalyan.  The transfer took place in December 1996.  Around US$100 million, of which most came from Norway and other international donors such as Sweden, Germany and Canada, were returned after the transfer to Grameen Bank as a loan.  In that way, the poor people’s bank avoided paying tax.

However, in February 1998, the Norwegian Embassy in Bangladesh rang the alarm bell, as staff of the embassy discovered that more than US$100 million had been transferred to an unknown company. The embassy had not even heard of the new company Grameen Kalyan.  The Norwegian state aid corporation NORAD reacted harshly that the funds were missing from the Grameen Bank in order to avoid future taxation.

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But a shrewd Yunus came up with a lame excuse, which also evidently proves, his habit of dodging taxes in Bangladesh. He said, “with gradual higher interest rate charged, more and more money will have to be paid out as taxes in the future”.

Meanwhile, NORAD and the Norwegian Embassy in Dhaka demanded that Muhammad Yunus refund all the money he had secretly transferred to Grameen Kayan from Grameen Bank. But, in spite of massive pressure from the Norwegian authorities, only around US$30 of the US$100 million grant money was refunded by Muhammad Yunus, while major portion of the stolen US$100 had never been refunded.

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In a personal letter to the then director of NORAD, Mohammed Yunus warned about the consequences should the matter go public. He wrote, “Dear Tove,  I need your help.  If the people within and outside government who are not supportive of Grameen [Bank] get hold of this letter, we’ll face real problems in Bangladesh”.

Surprisingly – NORAD kept their mouths shut and did not further investigate this case. Instead, to save Muhammad Yunus from legal consequences in Bangladesh and humiliation in the world – they stamped all the documents as CONFIDENTIAL.

Danish investigative journalist Tom Heinemann had repeatedly tried to get comment from NORAD bosses. In 1998, although NORAD official agreed to give an interview to Tom Heinemann and discuss why the case of Muhammad Yunus’ stealing US$100 million of grant money has been kept secret by NORAD. As Heinemann went at the NORAD headquarters for the interview – NORAD had abruptly cancelled it and no one from the Norwegian agency met Tom Heinemann, as no one wanted this dangerous information go public.

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Norwegian authorities, including its intelligence and law enforcement agency can not initiate a full-fledged investigation into this matter and force Muhammad Yunus and his cohorts inside NORAD in returning the stolen US$70 million to Grameen Bank. Until that happens, investigative journalists in Bangladesh and the world can begin fresher investigation into this matter and ask – WHERE IS US$70 MILLION of the total US$100 million that Muhammad Yunus had stolen from Grameen Bank.

It may be mentioned here that, Muhammad Yunus is a major donor of Clinton Foundation. Investigative journalists can also investigate – how much of stolen NORAD fund was later transferred by Muhammad Yunus to Hillary Clinton and her family foundation.


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