An alleged drug peddler and a suspected auto-rickshaw thief were killed in so-called gunfights with Rapid Action Battalion and detectives in Sylhet and Mymensingh yesterday.
The deceased were Fajar Ali, 34, of Companiganj in Sylhet and Mohammad Khalil, 35, of Phulbaria in Mymensingh.
Fajar was a listed drug trader and an accused in 20-22 cases for drug peddling, smuggling and other crimes, said Rab-9’s operations officer and Additional Superintendent of Police Satyajit Ghosh.
He said Rab detained Fajar at his village home in Goukhalerpar under Companiganj
upazila on Sunday and quizzed him about his hideout.
Around 12:30am yesterday, a Rab team reached Mitrimahal village in Gowainghat upazila to find out the hideout, he said.
Sensing presence of law enforcers, a group of drug peddlers opened fire on them. Rab men retaliated with gunfire which triggered a gunfight, Satyajit claimed.
After the “gunfight”, Rab men found Fajar’s injured body on the spot, he claimed, adding they took him to a hospital where doctors declared him dead.
Two Rab men -- Assistant Sub-inspector (ASI) Sekandar and Constable Pandit -- were injured in the incident, the Rab official claimed.
He also claimed that Rab recovered a pistol, 2,800 yaba tablets, and some marijuana and used ammunitions.
Abdul Ahad, officer-in-charge of Gowainghat Police Station, said Fajar was accused in several cases filed with different police stations in Sylhet.
The Daily Star could not contact Fajar’s family and independently verify Rab’s claims.
In Mymensingh, Khalil, a resident of Bakchala village in Phulbaria upazila, was a member of an inter-district auto-rickshaw stealing gang, said detectives.
Shah Kamal Akanda, officer-in-charge of the detective branch (DB) of police in Mymensingh, said acting on a tip-off that some auto-rickshaw thieves are involved in the trading of stolen auto-rickshaws in Bade Kolpa area of Mymensingh city, detectives raided the area.
Sensing their presence, the gang members opened fire on them, triggering a gunfight around 1:00am, claimed the OC, who led the team.
After the other gang members fled, police found bullet-hit Khalil on the spot, he claimed, adding they rushed him to Mymensingh Medical College Hospital where he was declared dead around 3:00am.
Detectives recovered a pipe gun and two stolen auto-rickshaws from the spot, the OC claimed.
Two DB men -- ASI Md Amir Hamza and Constable Jahangir Alam -- were injured during the incident, he said. They were given treatment at Mymensingh Police Lines Hospital.
The OC said Khalil was accused in some 10 cases including eight for stealing auto-rickshaws with different police stations in Mymensingh, Jamalpur and Sherpur.
Police sent the body to Mymensingh Medical College morgue for autopsy while a case was filed over the incident, he said.
[Our Sylhet and Mymensingh correspondents contributed to this report.]