RAB to brief media later in the morning
Sabur Ali had given Tk25 lakh for obtaining a government job to three people, who directed him to the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) in Dhaka.
There, he met a man in a room who introduced himself as Lieutenant Colonel Jakir, but was dressed in civil attire.
“He assured me of getting a government job for myself,” Sabur recalled. “Later, another man entered the room with a paper, saying it was an exam paper. All I had to do was sign it and Jakir said I would be selected.”
But the elusive government job never came, he lamented at a press briefing, held at the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) media centre in Karwan Bazar on Tuesday.
Commanding Officer of RAB 4 Chowdhury Monjurul Kabir told reporters that Sabur Ali was among at least 150-160 such individuals who were swindled by a gang of frauds.
“Posing themselves as army officials, or as secretaries of different ministries, they conned innocent people and took crores of takas from them,” he said.
RAB had detained 16 suspected members of the organized fraud gang from different areas of the capital, including Mirpur and Khilkhet, from Monday evening till Tuesday morning, he added.
Various fake appointment letters, deeds, applications and other documents, along with several mobile phones, were recovered from their possession, the RAB official remarked.
Those arrested include Linkon alias Masud alias Proshanto Kumar Shah, 43, Hasan Zia, 44, Sakib Ali alias Shakil, 36, Jannatul Ferdous alias Rasel, 33, Salim Sarder, 43, Shekh Jakir Hossain, 40, Abdul Kader Sharif, 33, Humayun Kabir, 50, Khalilur Rahman, 42, Esmail Hossain, 36, Rakibul Islam alias Shamrat, 25, Abul Hossain alias Saymun, 28, Keramot Hossain alias Shajib, 38, Rubel Biswas, 33, Kamruzzaman, 40, and Saiful Islam, 26.
Monjurul Kabir explained that some gang members would search for educated individuals in suburban areas who were seeking shortcuts to obtaining government jobs.
Then, another group would pose as top government officials and meet them at posh restaurants in the city, assure them of job placements and subsequently, make them sign false agreements.
Later, they would stage mock entrance exams near the relevant ministry's offices_to make it appear credible, then follow up with fake medical tests, and lastly, fake appointment letters.
After getting money off them, the gang used to assure the candidates of sending their appointment letters by post.
The RAB officials said the gang was involved in such activities for the past eight years. Legal action will be taken against the members, he added.