The list appears in the media at a time when a nationwide anti-narcotics drive is being conducted by different law enforcement agencies
Sixteen Brahmanbaria police officials who were found to be involved in drug trading were included on a Home Ministry-list.
Five of the accused police officials are officers-in-charge of different police stations, seven are sub-inspectors, and four are assistant sub-inspectors, affiliated to different police stations in the district.
The list appears in the media at a time when a nationwide anti-narcotics drive is being conducted by different law enforcement agencies.
However, the district police’s publicity apparatus , claims the list is an old one and action has already been taken against the suspected officials.
Brahmanbaria’s Additional Superintendent of Police (ASP), Mohammad Iqbal Hossain, who was tasked to investigate the matter, said: “The list is quite old. Already investigation reports have found some police officers guilty and they have been transferred elsewhere, and also, departmental action has been taken against them.”
“The investigation is still going on against some of them,” said ASP Iqbal.
“If they are found guilty in the investigation, necessary legal action will be taken against them,” added ASP Iqbal.
But ASP Iqbal did not mention the names of the ones already found guilty. This revelation has drawn mixed reactions from concerned citizens.
There is a 73km long border area in Brahmanbaria district with India which stretches from Kasba to Akhaura and into Bijoynagar upazila.
Various types of drugs including heroin, marijuana, phensedyl, and yaba, are entering the country through remote roads of the border, for which some law enforcement individuals are responsible.
Brahmanbaria Sammilita Sangskritik Jote convener, Abdun Noor, said: “If the police, who should be stopping this, are involved in drug trading, then how can we stop this? The list of names has come from the Home Ministry. So, it should not be taken lightly.”
“I am aware of the police personnel’s involvement with drug trading. There is no chance of someone getting special treatment because of their background,” said Brahmanbaria Public Prosecutor (PP), Advocate SM Yusuf.
He further said: “I think, if the police personnel in the list are proved guilty according to the investigation, then the law will run at its own pace.”
District drug control director, Mohammad Shariful Islam, said: “Nobody is above the law. We will discuss with higher level officials and legal action will be taken against the culprits.”
According to the district police in Brahmanbaria, 1,746 drug related cases have been filed, and at least 1100 prisoners are serving time in jail in connection with these cases.