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Underworld active ahead of city elections: Sleuths

Published : Monday, 27 January, 2020 at 12:00 AM  Count : 105

Intelligence agencies suspect that the underworld in the capital is being warmed-up before Dhaka North and South city corporation elections for establishing supremacy. Illegal firearms are being smuggled into the country in a bid to unleash violence in Dhaka centring the city elections. Police said these arms may be used to create terror ahead of the polls.
A senior intelligence official told the Daily Observer on Sunday that the use of small firearms is likely before the elections. The smuggling of firearms from across the border has also increased, he added.
The Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) source said police arrested a man with two illegal firearms and seven rounds of bullet from Lalbagh on Saturday on suspicion that he was planning violence centring the upcoming city elections.
According to the Detective Branch, the arrested person was identified as Ashiqur Rahman, 30.
They also suspect the firearms would be used on the election day or during campaigning to create fear or impose superiority of certain candidates.
Additional Commissioner Abdul Baten of the Detective Branch told the media on Sunday that according to information
gleaned from interrogating a suspect arrested with firearms, smugglers are bringing in firearms eyeing the city polls slated for February 1.
Intelligence sources said syndicates from both the sides of the border control such smuggling of firearms. Despite strong security measures, gunrunners are bringing in firearms amid rising demand from political cadres for creating violence in the country.
In capital Dhaka alone, they said, 50 syndicates of listed top terrorists are operating to deal with illegal firearms. These syndicates keep constant contacts with the gunrunners from across the border.
Bangladesh's top criminals have found a safe haven in Nadia, Bongaon, Dumdum, Teghatia, Thakurpukur and Kolkata of the Indian State of West Bengal.
When law enforcers turn tough or the criminals commit any serious crime here, they simply cross the border, legally or illegally, added the sources.
Bangladesh investigation sources revealed that many of the terrorists have changed their names to avoid the law enforcers there and stay at various hotels and rented houses in Kolkata.
However, a number of the top terrorists are living in luxury there, under the patronage of Indian police and intelligence wing, it was alleged.
In exchange, they carry out various 'assignments' back to the country. A number of crimes, including killings, are taking part as part of these assignments, the intelligence sources said.
The investigation revealed that many of these criminals are issued ID cards by the intelligence agency or the police so that they can roam around freely and safely.
Then again, if problems crop up, sometimes the police snatch away the ID cards, tear them up and arrest the criminals. But the criminals are no fools. They keep several copies of the ID cards so if one is destroyed they simply pull out another.
The firearms are likely to have been brought from the bordering area in Jashore with plans to be sold in Dhaka, the police official said.
Meanwhile Additional Deputy Commissioner of DB Saifur Rahman Azad said the arrestee also gave them names of some people who are trying to purchase firearms.

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