Sunday, 17 October, 2021

Back to old business !

70pc Teknaf Yaba peddlers who surrendered get involved in drug trade again

About 70 percent of Yaba traders, who surrendered to law enforcers in Teknaf of Cox’s Bazar to go straight, have returned to their old job, going back on their promise, according to the Department of Narcotics Control (DNC).

Some 123 Yaba traders officially surrendered to law enforcers on February 16, 2019 and February 3 in the current year, making a vow never to deal in Yaba and other drugs.

But they did not keep their words. Around 86 of them have got engaged in Yaba trading again.

Being informed of the matter, the taskforce, which was formed to prevent drug trading, held a virtual meeting recently and decided to launch a crackdown against the drug traders, said the sources.

Kusum Dewan, director (operations) of the DNC, presided over the meeting.

In the meeting, Sirajul Mostafa, assistant director of Teknaf Specialised Zone of the DNC, presented details about those who returned to the drug trade again. He depicted the present scenario of drug peddling in Teknaf.

After that, all the participants of the meeting -- representatives of intelligence agencies, police, Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB), Bangladesh Coast Guard and district administration -- agreed with the DNC assistant director.

The meeting also decided to carry out special joint drives against the drug traders and in Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar immediately to stop the menace of drugs, particularly Yaba, there. Contacted, Kusum Dewan, also deputy inspector general (DIG) of police, admitted to the Daily Sun that many Yaba traders who surrendered to law enforcers have returned to their old job. “The matter was discussed in the meeting.”

About the number of such traders, he said, “It can’t be said about their exact number. But it can be said that a number of them returned to drug trade breaking their promise.”

About the action against them, Kusum Dewan said, “They’ll be brought to book soon.”

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has so far filed 17 money-laundering cases against the Yaba traders, but chargesheets were submitted before court only in three of them.

Contacted, Humayun Kabir, special superintendent of police (SSP) of the Financial Crime unit of CID, told the Daily Sun that their Cox’s Bazar unit is investigating nine of the cases while the Financial Crime unit submitted chargesheets in three and is carrying out probe in five others.

He said they would be able to file chargesheets in rest of the cases within a month.

Mohammad Faisal Ahmmed, SP of CID Cox’s Bazar unit, told the Daily Sun that they got the nine cases just a month ago from the CID headquarters. “I’ve already assigned a number of officers to carry out investigation in the cases,” he said.