Officials irked, worried by people carrying arms at airport

Muktadir Rashid | Published: 00:04, Mar 25,2019 | Updated: 00:16, Mar 25,2019

 
 

Officials at the civil aviation ministry are irritated at the repeated incidents of not declaring firearms ignoring security warning at Dhaka airport and they believe that licences of firearms are being issued to people who are not eligible at all.
Five people including three ruling Awami League leaders ignored security warning of declaring their carrying firearms at the domestic terminal of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport in past one month and four of them were arrested. It triggers concern among the ministry officials.
‘We will write to the home ministry seeking information of those who were arrested at the airport for not declaring firearms during their travel,’ civil aviation secretary Mohibul Haque told New Age on Saturday.
Home minister Asaduzzaman Khan at a programme in Dhaka on Saturday also said legal actions were being taken against those who are violating the law without declaring their arms.
On Sunday, the security officials arrested Awami League’s Darussalam thana unit president AMB Mazharul Anam at the domestic terminal for collecting boarding pass without making the declaration of his licenced firearms with bullets on his way to Cox’s Bazar.
On Friday, the Awami League’s Sathkhira district unit agricultural affairs secretary SM Mojibur Rahman was arrested at the Shahjalal airport domestic terminal on his way to Jashore with his pistol and 35 bullets on the same ground. A metropolitan magistrate court sent him to jail on Saturday.
On March 16, AHM Nurul Islam of Netrakona, a body guard of
Probashi Palli Group chairman was arrested at the domestic terminal of the airport for carrying pistol without informing authorities concerned. He was travelling on Dhaka- Jashore route.
On March 11, airport security official arrested Mehedi Masud Hossain, the general secretary of
Chowgacha upazila unit Awami League in Jashore and also the chairman of Fulshar union, for not declaring firearm during his travel from Dhaka to Jashore.
The incidents have taken place after the failed hijack attempt of a commercial flight using fake gun on February 24 and also carrying a handbag with firearms inside the airport by film star Ilias Kanchan which has raised question on airport security.
The airport authorities hung put warnings at different entrances of the airport those read, ‘if you carry firearms, declare after entering the first gate [at the airport]. Enter the gate by following necessary rules. Otherwise, legal action will be taken against you. ’
During visits at the domestic terminal at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport and Cox’s Bazar airport on March 9 and March 13, the airport security personal and airlines operators were seen reminding each of the passengers on whether they had declared their firearms before they enter for checking or collecting boarding pass.
Warnings were seen hanging at the booths of all four private operators at the airport.
At Dhaka airport, aviation security unit chief Wing Commander Noor E Alam Siddique said everyday 10 to 12 passengers carry firearms during their travel but a few ignore the warnings.

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