Letters

Peddlers of ‘madness drug’ are using air route

Dear Editor:
It is indeed a bad news that peddlers of ‘madness drug’ are using air route too. The ‘crazy pill’ Yaba is very injurious to health because it causes sadness and depression. London-based Culture Trip on 30 May 2017 said that it is also called “the madness drug”. Despite the fact that Yaba was outlawed in Thailand in the early 1970s yet it continues to make appearances from time to time in headlines across the country. Here is everything you need to know about Yaba, the madness drug.
It was reported that smugglers of Yaba or ‘the crazy pills’ are bringing from Teknaf, the gateway for the drugs to Bangladesh, are now exploring air route to bring Yaba into the capital, and the Dhaka airport saw 63,898 pills seized in 4 months. At least 15 syndicates are involved in the smuggling of the pills to the capital from Cox’s Bazar. The Daily Star reported on February 13, 2019 Yaba smugglers are now using air routes. The new route emerged in the midst of tougher awareness on Yaba smuggling, especially on highways, by law enforcers since the anti-narcotics drive began on May 4 last year.
The new route is being used by different Yaba smuggling syndicates, who pay drug bootlegger to bring the contraband items to the capital by hiding those in their rectums and abdomens, according to the Airport Armed Police Battalion (AAPB). The matter came to the AAPBn’s attention after the arrests of 32 such people along with a total of 63,898 pills at the Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in the past four months. Among the arrestees, six were Yaba traders and the others were carriers. The arrested traders were carrying the drugs themselves at the time.
At least 26 cases have been filed in this connection, said Alamgir Hossain, additional superintendent of police of AAPBn. “The smugglers have chosen the new route as they think it is safer than the Dhaka-Chittagong highway for quick movement,” he told The Daily Star. “We are now trying to detect the syndicate members and the masterminds behind this.”
On July 30 last year, the AAPB arrested the first such carrier at the airport, Rima Ghosh, whilst she was carrying 3,843 pieces Yaba concealed in her body and luggage. No one was arrested in August and September, but in November, 19 people were arrested and 14 cases were filed with the Airport Police Station. Eight people were arrested in December and four more in January from the airport, according to the AAPBn database. Some of these Yaba consignments were supposed to go to Narail and Munshiganj from Dhaka airport via road, said additional SP Alamgir.
The need of the hour is enhanced vigilance.
A M K Chowdhury
Narayanganj

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