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Comilla Victoria College campus turns into den of drugs, prostitution in pandemic

  • Published at 11:22 pm July 14th, 2021
Comilla Victoria College
Comilla Victoria College campus Dhaka Tribune

The closed dormitories are allegedly occupied by sex workers and drug addicts at nighttime

The Comilla Victoria Government College campus has been closed for over a year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

About 25,000 students study in 22 departments of the degree branch of Comilla Victoria Government College. Poet Nazrul Islam Hostel and Nawab Faizunnesa Hall provide residential facilities to thousands of students. Besides, several thousand students live in rented houses in Dharmapur area.

But the closed campus and dormitories are now a den for drug addicts and sex workers. Disregarding police patrols during the lockdown, drug dealers roam the college campus to sell drugs. 

The closed dormitories are occupied by sex workers and drug addicts at nighttime. College authorities say a police outpost in Dharmapur is needed to solve the problem.

According to several reliable sources, outsiders enter the Kandirpar Higher Secondary Branch of the college by scaling the walls at night and stay there taking drugs. Sex workers enter the closed building of the New Hostel in the dark of night.

Drug addicts gather regularly behind the septic tanks and the toilets of the degree branch examination building and Zia Auditorium, in front of the Motaher Hossain Central Library building, on the ground floor of Kotha Bhaban, and in some special rooms of Science Bhaban-2. 

College canteen Cafe-71 runs from evening to midnight for selling drugs. Cafe-71 is a regular gathering place for drug addicts in the city, suburbs and Kotbari area. 

Also Read - 2 arrested over gang-rape, murder in Gazipur

The accused are all expelled members of the Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL).

A female member of the Victoria College Debate Council has complained that outsiders smoke cigarettes in front of the central library. Girls don't want to go there because of them.

Abdullahi Qafi, a math student at the college, said the dominance of outsiders on the college campus has increased over the past four years. 

They carry weapons, so no teachers, students or staff here want to speak against them, he said.

On condition of anonymity, a college employee said a local youth named Shuvo, son of Shafiqul Islam of Shubh Dharmapur area and brother of college driver Shamim Ahmed, was involved in drug dealing. They are all members of the “Ashiq and Jubayer group”. Though the college remained closed, they occupy the canteen as and when they want.

Drug dealers come to college carrying weapons with them all the time, so the night watchmen say nothing out of fear.

He also said that the college canteen has been allocated to the expelled members of BCL without following any government rules. They have now turned the canteen into a crime scene.

According to BCL of Comilla metropolitan sources, three members of Victoria College BCL were expelled from BCL on May 11, 2019, for violating party discipline. They are Rakibul Islam Jubayer, Ashiqur Rahman Jewel and Abdur Rahman Babu. 

After being expelled from the party, they became even more reckless.

Kazi Sayem, the convener of Victoria College Chhatra League, said, "Those who are associated with drugs have no place in the League, whoever he is. I will take immediate action if any complaint is received. And I will talk to the principal to make the campus drug free."

In this regard, Abu Jafar Khan, acting principal of the college, said if any drug-related allegation is found against anyone, it will be handed over to the police immediately. The entry of outsiders has decreased from the past, he insisted.

"We have installed CCTV cameras in important parts of the campus. We have plans to cover the entire campus with CCTV cameras. There are problems in various aspects of the college, but there are constant attempts to solve these," said the principal.

Md Shahjahan, secretary of the teachers' council, thinks that these problems have been going on for a long time.

He said, "The police administration cooperates with us regularly. But a police outpost is needed here for a permanent solution to the problem. We will make a written request to the superintendent of police in this regard."

Kotwali model police Officer-in-Charge (OC) Bakhtiyar Uddin Chowdhury said the patrol police are always on duty. "When we get a call from Victoria College, we go to campus right away."

“Some youths have been brought to the police station more than once. Later their guardians came and took them away. No case has been filed in anyone's name,” the OC added.

There are now four outposts under Kotwali police station and the superintendent of police will decide on the new outpost, he added.

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