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Friday, November 21, 2014, Agrahayan 7, 1421, Muharram 27, 1436 Hijr

Govt mulls strict law to curb human trafficking
Mizanur Rahman
Publish Date : 2014-11-21,  Publish Time : 00:00,  View Count : 11
The government is making a strict law to check human trafficking that has poised as a severe crime and caused greater concern in recent times.
In the name of sending people abroad, unscrupulous elements have resorted to send job-seekers abroad through clandestine routes and illegitimate ways. Under the proposed law, strict action would be taken against such immoral design as it very much involved with illegal financial transactions also, finance ministry sources told Daily Observer today.  
  To attain these objectives and to protect people from harassments, some clauses of money laundering laws are being upgraded. Provisions would be there to settle such cases quickly and under easy ways, the sources confirmed.
When contacted a senior official of Finance Ministry said "Financial transactions are involved in human trafficking. For this an initiative has been taken from this ministry to reform law to stop human trafficking".  "The finance minister himself is looking after the matter, "he added.
The sources said to reduce lingering of human trafficking cases; the lapses and loopholes of the existing law are being streamlined. The charges of conducting the entire case including investigations may be given to the police department. The final decision about these matters will be taken at the coordination committee meeting of money laundering and terror financing prevention. The meeting to be held on November 23 is likely to be chaired by Finance Minister  Abul Maal Abdul Muhith.
Taking advantage of simplicity of people, a syndicate is active in cheating the job-seekers abroad.  This syndicate allures them to send them to different countries including Malaysia, Singapore, Middle East and America where people think plenty of lucrative jobs are available.
Now-a-days a practice is being noticed to use sea routes in sending the people in an illegal means. In some cases they are caught by the security guards of different countries in the midway that created untold sufferings for the people concerned. In most cases, the cheaters escape punishments and in some cases they get scot-free under the lapses of law and our judiciary system.
In some cases many have to suffer jail terms abroad without committing any crime whatsoever. And those who are responsible for these crimes are coming out on bails, even if they are arrested. Finally, such cases are sent to cold storage and no agencies are there to look into them.
The concerned sources said that those cheaters, after coming out on bail, against resorted to such crimes that jeopardize the image of the country in the community of nations. Side by side with that common people have to face huge financial losses. For this, the existing law of money laundering and terror financing 2012 is being recast to meet the present-day need.  
In a Finance Ministry letter sent to secretaries and high officials of Home Ministry, ACC (anticorruption commission), Bangladesh Bank, Police Headquarters, NBR, CSEC, Prime Minister's office, CAG, Law Ministry, Commerce Ministry and Housing Ministry it has been asked to give opinions on the draft of the reform law. The draft has, however, been made by Bangladesh Bank.
Whenever the crimes concerning money laundering and human trafficking increase in a country it leaves negative impact on foreign loans. Besides, it leaves negative impact on foreign trade too.. For this reason the government is looking after the matter as a sensitive affair. Bangladesh Money Laundering Prevention Law, Anti Terrorism Law and laws relating to crimes has been made in coordination with and in the light of UN convention and resolution.
Money laundering and terrorism prevention is also a political pledge of the present Bangladesh government. For this Bangladesh became a member of APG (Asia Pacific Group), an international organisation on money laundering last year. One hundred eighty countries are involved in it.

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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