Tuesday, 26 October, 2021
E-paper

Alarming arms smuggling

Alarming arms smuggling

A report published on the front page of this daily yesterday stated that arms dealers have become active again and are smuggling small firearms into the country from India and Myanmar through 30 different points of the border. The report further mentioned that hundreds of members of trafficking rings smuggled weapons and promptly distributed the arms among miscreants across the country. An unhindered inflow of small arms along different routes eventually reaches the militants and other criminals. The piece of news is a warning to all.

Earlier, arms were smuggled ahead of national parliamentary elections with the intention to manipulate polls by using muscle power. But, the scenario has changed to a great extent now as illegal firearms are sold around the year. In recent years, the use of small firearms increased alarmingly. The firearms are being used in all kinds of scenarios – from trivial arguments to militant attacks. Whenever news comes about clashes between people, members of rivalry groups are seen attacking each other using firearms. While possessing illegal firearms was once considered to be socially disgraceful, people nowadays have seemingly taken it as a symbol of power and influence. So desire has grown among the people to possess illegal arms, even if they own legal ones. As a result, the market is created (actually expanding) for illegal firearms, particularly for small arms that are easy to hide or carry.

The supply of illegal firearms is posing a security threat to every individual as well as the nation. Though the number of cases filed over firearms smuggling has increased, there is no progress in curbing the supply into the country. Lawlessness insides the country and inadequate monitoring and surveillance at the border areas are the reasons for such an aggravated situation. Therefore to curb this threat, it is essential to take robust measures in border areas along with ensuring law and order in the country. Border management between Bangladesh-India and Bangladesh-Myanmar needs to be strengthened further despite the known problems like inadequate fencing, regular migration of people, and the rough terrain of the border areas. There is no scope to let arms smuggling go unbeaten.