• Wednesday, Oct 23, 2019
  • Last Update : 12:56 am

13 detained in raids on illegal casinos


As part of the search operations, Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) raided the office of a Jubo League leader, and two clubs in Dhaka, as well as a snooker club in Chittagong

Law enforcement agencies on Friday detained thirteen people, including two leaders of the ruling party affiliated organizations, during raids in search of potential illegal casinos in Dhaka, and Chittagong.

As part of the search operations, Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) raided the office of a Jubo League leader, and two clubs in Dhaka, as well as a snooker club in Chittagong.

The elite force raided the house of Jubo League leader SM Golam Kibria Shamim at Niketon in Dhaka's Gulshan area on Friday morning, detained seven of his bodyguards, and seized their weapons.

Also Read - RAB arrests Jubo League leader Khalid from Gulshan

RAB seized Tk1.80 crore in cash, Tk165.27 crore worth of fixed deposit receipts (FDRs), alcohol, and firearms during the raid.

Shamim was an active member of Jubo Dal, but later joined Jubo League, and identified himself as the cooperative affairs secretary of the organization’s central committee.

However, Jubo League Chairman Omar Faruk Chowdhury, and Awami League Deputy Office Secretary Biplob Barua disowned Shamim, saying no one called GK Shamim had ever been involved with their organization.

Clubs raided in Dhaka, Chittagong

Law enforcement agencies raided two clubs, and a snooker club in Dhaka, and Chittagong.

In Dhaka, RAB officials detained Kalabagan Krira Chakra Club President Shafiqul Alam Firoz, after raiding the club in search of a potential illegal casino. However, they found no casino in the sports organization.

Also Read - Jubo League chief: Arrest casino operators irrespective of party affiliation

Firoz is a member of the Central Executive Committee of Bangladesh Krishak League, an affiliate organization of Awami League.

In addition to Firoz, four staff members - Hafizul Islam, Harun, Anwar Hossain, and Liton Mia - were also detained during the drive, according to RAB.

RAB-2 Commanding Officer Ashique Billah said they recovered 500 packs of playing cards, an unlicensed foreign-made pistol with three bullets, and some yellow yaba tablets.

In Dhanmondi, the elite force sealed off the bar at Dhanmondi Club Limited at about 10pm, after it had been cordoned off since the evening.

Also Read - RAB seals off bar inside Dhanmondi Club

“We could not verify how much liquor they have permission to store. We have given them 24-hours time to present the necessary documents,” said Shahab Uddin, company commander of RAB-2.

Legal action will be taken if any irregularities are found with the stock, he added.

The bar was closed during the raid, as Friday is a weekend.

Two other clubs in Dhaka - Motsojibi Club in Karwan Bazar, and AJAX Sports Cultural & Social Welfare Club on Elephant Road - were surrounded by RAB officials at the time of filing this report at 10pm.

Meanwhile, Chittagong police detained two people after shutting down Hangout, a snooker club, on the first floor of Almas Cinema Bhaban at the city’s Kazir Dewri under Kotwali police station.

Also Read - RAB raids Kalabagan Krira Chakra Club, club president held

Golam Rasul Babul, secretary general of Chattogram Paribahan Malik Samity, is the owner of the club, which was launched in 2007.  

Kotwali police station OC Mohammad Mohsin said they conducted the raid at the club based on allegations of gambling during snooker, and pool matches there.

“The snooker club was shut down as the owner could not show any valid document for running such a club. No narcotic substances were found during the drive. We are now questioning the detainees,” said the OC.

Also Read - Jubo League leader Shamim caught with cash, FDRs 

Police detained 27 people, including 25 players, from the club. Later, the 25 players, who included some students, were released after giving an undertaking.

“If a member of the ruling party is involved in corruption, they will face the music,” said Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader.

“No godfather will be spared,” said Quader, also the road transport and bridges minister, during a press conference at the Awami League president's political office in Dhanmondi.