Industries minister Amir Hossain Amu on Wednesday said that 37,225 suspected drug peddlers and addicts were arrested by law enforcement agencies in the ongoing nationwide anti-drug drive since May 18.
Amu, addressing a press briefing after chairing a meeting of the cabinet committee on law and order at the secretariat in the capital, also said that the suspects were arrested in 25,575 cases.
He said that the jails across the country had a total of 89,589 inmates, of which 42 percent were accused in drug-related cases.
When asked how many suspects were killed in the drive across the country, he said that the issue was not discussed in the meeting.
When enquired about having no initiative to nab a lawmaker from Cox’s Bazar whose name appeared as a mastermind of drug peddling, he said that nobody would be spared if proper evidence was found.
As to the allegation that only small peddlers were nabbed in the drive, he said that the allegation was not correct and that the government was very strict on the issue. He said that the drive would continue until containing drugs fully.
The industries minister said that the Border Guard Bangladesh was alert to resist smuggling in of drugs and the government had decided that other law enforcement agencies would work together on the issue.
Mentioning that the prime minister announced a ‘zero tolerance’ policy on drugs, he stressed the need for continued support from all quarters for the success of the anti-drug drive.
According to media reports, 186 suspected drug peddlers were killed during the anti-drug drive since May 15. Most of them were killed in ‘gunfights’ with the police and the Rapid Action Battalion.
Amu said that the government was working on the persons who were trying to worsen the law and order situation using Facebook and other social media.
He claimed that the law and order situation was now better than any other time.
The industries minister said that almost 80 per cent cases of murder, robbery and repression on women and children in the months of May and June were unearthed and that the number of incidents of rape, abduction and women repression decreased during the time.
The committee members, including home minister Asaduzzaman Khan, were present.
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