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Alleged casino kingpin Samrat arrested from Comilla

  • Published at 09:44 am October 6th, 2019
WEB_ Samrat Ismail hossain chowdhury
File Photo: Ismail Hossain Chowdhury Samrat emerged as an influential leader of Jubo league during the Awami League regime of 1996-2001 Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

RAB raided at least six illegal casinos in Dhaka city on September 18

Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) has arrested Dhaka South Jubo League President Ismail Chowdhury Samrat and his accomplice Arman from Comilla, over their alleged involvement with illicit casino operations.

He was arrested from Chauddagram upazila of the district around 5am on Sunday, RAB Director (Legal and Media Wing) Lt Colonel Sarwar Din Quasem  told Dhaka Tribune.

The RAB official said: "We are escorting Samrat to Dhaka under heavy security. He will be questioned about his involvement to the casino business after we reach the capital.

"Necessary legal measures will be taken if the allegations against him prove to be true."

The involvement of Jubo League leaders in overseeing illicit gambling operations came to light after the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) uncovered illegal casino business in raids on Young Men's Club, Wanderers Club and Muktijoddha Krira Chakra on September 18.

The elite police unit arrested Khalid Mahmud, organising secretary of Jubo League's Dhaka south unit, the same day before nabbing Kalabagan Krira Chakra President and Krishak League leader Shafiqul Alam Firoz. 

Also Read- How are the online casinos operated?

Two days later, Jubo League leader and businessman GK Shamim, was arrested for money laundering, illegal possession of arms, and narcotics.

Raids by the Dhaka Metropolitan Police later on the Mohammedan Sporting Club, Dilkhusha Sporting Club, Victoria Sporting Club and Arambagh Sporting Club also uncovered similar gambling operations.

On Thursday September 27, RAB arrested Mohammedan’s Director-in-Charge Lokman Hossain Bhuiyan and charged him with money laundering over his proceedings from the decades-old club.

Meanwhile, rumours have been rife since Friday that Samrat, the alleged kingpin of Dhaka casinos, could be arrested any time.

Since September 18, RAB and police have raided different clubs across Bangladesh, busting illegal casinos. A number of people, including Jubo league leaders, were detained and then showed arrested after the raids.

Samrat went into hiding after being suspected of running illegal casinos. On September 24, Police Headquarters issued a travel ban against him.

Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal recently said Samrat will be brought to justice if evidence surfaces that he has committed a crime.