The number of yaba pills (a contraband drug) smuggled into Bangladesh from neighbouring Myanmar has surged by two and a half times under the current military regime compared to the amount reported during the rule of ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
This information was obtained from the meeting minutes of the parliamentary standing committee on the ministry of home affairs held on Thursday.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan told the meeting that despite negotiations on the issue the Myanmar military regime is patronising the smuggling of yaba pills to Bangladesh. That's why the smuggling of the illegal drug has increased.
He mentioned that apart from the most-used route of bordering Naf River, the contrabands enter Bangladesh through the remote land border areas too.
The home minister said that Bandarban and Khagrachari, used as yaba routes, have many inaccessible areas where round-the-clock surveillance is not possible.
It takes two days to go from one BOP to another BOP there, he added.
He also said that the number of BOP is being increased in all those areas.
Chairman of the committee Shamsul Haque Tuku said, yaba started arriving in Bangladesh through the Rohingyas coming from Myanmar.
"Then it gradually spread throughout the country," he said.
He expressed his frustration saying that despite declaring a war against drugs, it is not possible to prevent drug trade and consumption.
According to the minutes of the meeting, issues relating to committees of mosques, temples and graveyards were discussed in the previous meeting of the parliamentary watchdog.
In that meeting, Tuku said the truly religious and good people are staying away from the mosque, temple and cemetery committees.
Those involved in drug or anti-social activities are coming to these positions through political influence. As a result, honest people are not able to contribute to the society, he told the meeting.
He said, if the committees of all the mosques, temples and cemeteries of the country are formed under the Islamic Foundation, it will bring positive results.
The meeting decided to invite the director general of the Islamic Foundation to a meeting of the standing committee to discuss the subject.
The meeting also discussed the issue of TikTok extensively.
Chairman Tuku said that TikTok is under fire for its negative use that leads to violence, rumours and misinformation. He recommended closing the social media app.
According to the director general of the National Telecommunication Monitoring Centre (NTMC), young people in Bangladesh spend 80% of their Internet time on TikTok.
"This platform is used to spread vindictive misinformation and hate speech. It has more negative uses than positive ones," he said at a separate event.
He also said that a letter has already been sent to BTRC to stop TikTok app with all kinds of data.
Meanwhile, the press release of the Parliament Secretariat informed that citizens have been advised to keep vigil against any attempt to disturb communal harmony in the country.
The parliamentary body also recommended posting of husband and wife in same area, if they are working in government service.
Chairman of the committee Shamsul Haque Tuku chaired the meeting. Committee members Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, Md Habibur Rahman, Samshul Alam Dudu, Kujendra Lal Tripura, Noor Mohammad, Sultan Mohammad Mansoor Ahmad and Rumana Ali were present at the meeting.