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Dhaka Tribune

Agargaon vehicle dumping ground, a supply depot for thieves

Update : 16 Apr 2014, 06:56 PM

The vehicle dumping ground in Agargaon, where the Dhaka Metropolitan Police keeps its seized vehicles, has allegedly become a supply depot for thieves who collect car parts by paying the necessary fees to unscrupulous law enforcers.

The Dhaka Tribune has learnt that most of the components of the seized vehicles end up in the second-hand car parts markets in city’s Dholaikhal, after the dumping ground is scavenged by thieves, allegedly under the nose of the police force.

The dumping ground in Agargaon is used to store vehicles that law enforcers have seized from crime scenes, or were used for committing crimes, or ones that lacked legal papers. Left unclaimed by their owners, many of these vehicles soon become damaged and useless for the lack of proper maintenance by authorities concerned.

According to DMP sources, the 49 police stations in the capital have around 4,000 motorised and non-motorised vehicles in their custody.  Among these, the Agargaon dumping ground keeps around 625 vehicles which still have cases pending against them, according to register book of the ground.

A large number of seized vehicles end up at the dumping ground, as most of the capital’s police stations were set up in rented buildings that lack adequate space for keeping vehicles.

A faction of unscrupulous police officials, who are in charge of the dumping ground, reportedly sell off valuable car parts to buyers from Dholaikhal to make a hefty profit without breaking a sweat.

During a recent visit to the dumping ground in Agargaon, the Dhaka Tribune found that a number of vehicles including trucks, covered vans, CNG-run auto-rickshaws had been kept haphazardly, with a thick layer of dust covering all the vehicles.

Thanks to scavenging drives by thieves, most vehicles were missing either an engine, or headlights, or seats; while some vehicles only had their skeletal body frames left.

The Agargaon dumping ground has no boundary wall, making it easy for thieves to enter and pick through the wide array of vehicles. In the vicinity of the dumping ground, the Dhaka Tribune also found several repair shops, which also sold vehicle parts salvaged from the nearby ground, sources claimed.

When contacted, Yeasmin-Ud-Dola, the police sergeant in charge of the Agargaon dumping ground, told the Dhaka Tribune that since the ground started its operation in 2001, many owners did not reclaim their vehicles after the cases were solved.

Speaking on the fact that engines go missing from the vehicles, Yeasmin admitted that thieves often steal car parts as there is no boundary wall surrounding the ground, but added that police stations also often send vehicles that have no engine in the first place.

Meanwhile, the Dhaka Tribune has learnt that car body parts of different popular brands – stolen from the dumping ground – are later sold at the Dholaikhal market for as low as one-third their market price.

Disguised as a car parts trader, this reporter learned from other businesspeople at the Dholaikhal market that most of the vehicle parts sold there were stolen from seized vehicles.

Seeking anonymity, an employee of a popular store of the area told the Dhaka Tribune that in order to succeed in the business, one had to maintain high-level contacts with thieves from the “black market” of law enforcers of the “white market.”

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