No one involved in drug trading to be spared, warns Home Minister
They were welcomed to take the stage in Teknaf on Saturday as planned earlier, and then they publicly surrendered to the police to face the obvious fate – the incarceration – for their long involvement in Yaba trading and amassing wealth.
With nine conditions, 102 yaba traders including 29 godfathers, as termed by the police, surrendered to the Cox’s Bazar police along with 3.5 lakh Yaba tablets and 30 firearms at Teknaf Pilot High School’s playground in the afternoon.
Sixteen relatives of former MP Abdur Rahman Bodi were among those who surrendered after much media hype. Four of them were said to be Bodi’s brothers. They had been in police custody since January 15 last.
Bodi’s four brothers— Abdul Shukkur, Abdul Amin, Md Md Shafiq and Md Faisal — his cousin Kamrul Hasan Russell, nephew Shahedur Rahman Nipum, stepbrothers Abdul Amin and Faisal and in-law Shahed Kamal among the godfathers surrendered to the police.
Other prominent accused are Teknaf Upazila Parishad Chairman Dinar Mia, Hrilar Union Parishad members Nurul Huda and Jamal Hossain, Teknaf Municipality councilor Nurul Bashar Nurshad, women councilor Kahinur Begum’s husband Shah Alam, Teknaf Sadar UP member Enamul Haque, Upazila BNP General Secretary’s two brothers Ziaur Rahman and Abdur Rahman.
The nine conditions based on which they were allowed to surrender include: They (those surrendered) will not involve in drug trading in the future, extend help to free their respective areas from drugs, provide information about other active drug traders of the district to the police, face courts over the existing cases filed against them, surrender all the arms and drugs they have possessed and submit their and their relatives’ wealth statements.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal attended the surrender programme as the chief guest while Inspector General of Police Dr Javed Patwary was present as a special guest with the Police Super of the district presiding over it.
“Those who’ve surrendered today (Saturday) narrowly managed to save their themselves…no one involved in drug trading will be spared,” warned the minister while addressing the programme.
The minister said, “Police, BGB, Coast Guard and Rab have been made stronger… traps have been set up in places to this end. Drug traders will have to fall there…”
Asaduzzaman Khan said, “Bangladesh is a wonder in development models of the world. If anyone stands in the way of Bangladesh’s progress, he or she won’t be spared. Now, corruption and drugs have been big obstacles to the country’s development. Yaba is destroying the country and the nation. The Yaba traders and its smugglers will be *eliminated to take the country forward.”
IGP Javed Patwary said this is for the first time a surrender ceremony was being held in the country. “Those who didn’t respond to the police call to surrender won’t be spared.”
Two cases — one for trading Yaba while another for possessing arms — were filed in this connection, said Cox’s Bazar Police Super ABM Masud Hossain. “They’ll be sent to jail.”
All the 102 people will be placed before the court for the next proceedings, he added.
Sources said these godfathers and drug dealers had been kept in a safe house at Cox’s Bazar Police Lines since January 10.
On February 12 last, police through PA system urged those involved in Yaba peddling to surrender. They also urged people to join the surrender ceremony.
According to sources, there are 1,151 people on the general list of the Home Ministry while 73 are on the list of the ‘godfathers’. From these two lists, 102 Yaba traders surrendered on Saturday. Of them, 39 are godfathers.