The Department of Narcotics Control (DNC) found several drug dens in its recent drives where closed-circuit cameras (CCTV) looked out in all directions, allowing the criminals to detect police activity in time and escape.
“In the last three to four months, all over the capital we found drug dens surrounded by CCTV cameras,” DNC Director (Operations and Intelligence) Deputy Inspector General Syed Towfique Uddin Ahmed said in the department’s monthly press briefing on Thursday.
“This is a new challenge for us.”
Towfique said that the department estimates there are over 3,100 drug peddlers operating across Bangladesh.
Senior police and RAB officials were also at the briefing.
Bangladesh Police Headquarters’ Deputy Inspector General (Media and Planning) AKM Shahidur Rahman said: “Criminals may use different tricks but the law enforcers know how to win over such situations. Police have many other techniques to catch the criminals and we will follow those.”
Echoing with DIG Shahidur, Rapid Action Battalion’s Media and Legal Wing Director Commander Mufti Mahmud Khan said: “RAB has always zero tolerance for drug smuggling and the elite force’s activities are smarter than the criminals’.”
A DNC team recently conducted a drive to catch a drug peddling operation at at a house located in a narrow alley near the Dhaka-Narayanganj Road.
“The team recovered a massive amount of drugs after raiding the home but the dealers managed to get away because they had seen our movements through their cameras placed at different points in the alley and their building,” said DNC Dhaka Divisional Intelligence Superintendent Md Fazlul Haque.
In yet another drive at Bangshal on February 13, DNC managed to recover a large quantity of yaba pills and arrest two drug dealers while Selim, the leader of the smuggling racket, fled in the same manner, said Md Khorshed Alam, assistant director of DNC Dhaka Metro (north).
“Selim had his two-storey building and the adjacent area covered with 14 cameras,” he said.
Mukul Jyoti Chakma, deputy director of DNC Dhaka Metro region, said DNC found drug dealers in Chalantika slum, Geneva Camp, Bhatara, Sanarpar and many other drug spots in the city adopting this strategy.
“DNC with the assistance of other law enforcement agencies are doing detective work to find more of such drug dens,” he added.
Bilateral meeting to stop border drug flow
DNC intelligence wing said 37 yaba factories run their operations at the town of Maungdaw in Myanmar, located near the Bangladesh border. The town supplies almost all of the yaba in Bangladesh, a drug that law enforcement say is the most prevalent and problematic.
DNC chief DIG Towfique said Bangladesh and Myanmar will sit for a three-day meeting on March 8-10 to discuss the closing of yaba factories located at the Bangladesh-Myanmar border.
A 12-member team, comprising senior officials of DNC, Border Guard Bangladesh, Bangladesh Police and other authorities concerned will travel to Myanmar to take part in the meeting.
The Korean International Cooperative Agency is working to modernise DNC for the last two years. It is currently working with DNC to create a criminal database which should help cooperation and linkage among DNC and other authorities concerned, DNC Director (Preventive Education) KM Tariqul Islam said at the press briefing.