Evaly Managing Director Mohammad Rassel and his wife Shamima Nasrin, the chairman of the e-commerce firm, have been barred from traveling abroad by a Dhaka court.
Metropolitan Senior Special Judge KM Imrul Kayes court imposed the ban on Thursday after the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) filed a petition, ACC prosecutor Mahmud Jahangir Hossain told Dhaka Tribune.
The graft watchdog has opened a probe into allegations of embezzlement and laundering of Tk338.62 crore against the online marketplace.
According to the ACC prosecutor, the commission made the plea suspecting that the duo was attempting to escape the country.
Panic also spread regarding the matter following media reports of Evaly closing its office in Dhanmondi even after the government lifted the lockdown.
A good portion of people also expressed suspicion for the abrupt closure of Evaly's customer care services and office on its page and related groups.
However, Evaly refuted the news about the closure of the office and hotline services through a press release sent to Dhaka Tribune
“Customers are able to take regular services from our website, app, and Facebook. At the same time, our customer service centre hotline number is active every day from 8am to 11pm,” read the press release.
The company further said Evaly officials have been asked to work from home, apart from some crucial members operating in a limited capacity across three warehouses responsible for deliveries.
It also said Evaly workers were infected by the virus both before and after the lockdown, and to mitigate risks, it imposed work-from-home for the employees.
According to the company, between July 1 and 15, the call centre of Evaly provided services to customers against an average of 12,054 calls per day. An average of 789 calls per hour is being received from its call centre. In addition, customers have been served by receiving a maximum of 1,392 calls per hour with the help of 220 customer service representatives.
Evaly had also alleged that the false news and propaganda against the brand is putting the future of more than 4 million customers, over 26,000 merchants and sellers, and about 5,000 employees at risk.
Previously on Friday, the e-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (e-CAB) issued a show-cause letter to Evaly asking it to respond to allegations within seven days.
Speaking to Dhaka Tribune, Mohammad Sahab Uddin, vice president of e-CAB, said: “We are only trying to bring the digital marketplace under compliance and do not want the closure of any business.
“However, until proven guilty, we have to abide by certain rules and reinstate consumer trust in the digital marketplace through a process,” he added.
Various popular brands have also reportedly decided not to allow the redeeming of Evaly's gift vouchers on account of not getting payments from the e-commerce company.
However, Arvid Kabir, a regular consumer of Artisan who had bought one such voucher told Dhaka Tribune: “I had called them up on July 14 asking them to know if I could still purchase through the voucher and asking if they are with Evaly, and they said yes to both queries.”
Swarna Kabir, another consumer who called Artisan customer service, got the same reply.