Five more people, including a female, were shot dead in the last four days, in what police claimed were mostly incidents of feuds between various drug-dealing factions.
Police descriptions of the murders were strikingly similar.
Of the five, police claimed two were killed in Jessore in a “gunfight” between two groups of drug traders early Friday and yesterday.
In Jessore, alleged drug peddler Shahidul Islam, 36, son of Nur Islam, was killed in a “gunfight” between two rival gangs of drug dealers in Abhaynagar upazila early yesterday, Sheikh Gani Mia, officer-in-charge (OC) of Abhaynagar Police Station told our Benapole correspondent.
The law enforcers went to the spot after being informed that two groups of drug peddlers had engaged in a gunfight in Chengutia area of Nayapara. From there, they recovered Shahidul's body, the OC said.
Anisur Rahman, nephew of the dead, said that some unidentified men picked up Shahidul from his residence around 11:00am on Eid Day.
Before that, suspected drug peddler Montaz Ali, 40, was killed near Kutcheymora Poultry Farm on Nabharan – Sathkhira Road under Sharsha upazila in the district early Friday, confirmed M Moshiur Rahman, officer in-charge of Sharsha Police Station. The murder was similar to that of Shahidul's.
A relative seeking anonymity however claimed Montaz had been missing ever since he was picked up by plainclothes men.
In the meantime in Mymensingh, a female “drug trader” was found killed on Sunday morning. She was identified as Rehena Begum, 45, of the town's Gandrapa area.
Her family members however claimed some plainclothes men picked her up from her house on Friday afternoon after which she went traceless.
Khandaker Shaker Ahmed, Inspector (Investigation) of Kotwali Police Station claimed they recovered the body after being informed by locals and sent it to Mymensingh Medical College Hospital morgue for autopsy.
According to police, Rehena, who was accused in some seven drug cases, might have been killed in “clashes” among drug peddlers.
Some neighbours said Rehena quit the drug business around two years ago after she was given a rickshaw, an auto-rickshaw and a sewing machine from police administration for her rehabilitation.
Elsewhere, Bogra Police claimed to have recovered a bullet-hit body of an alleged drug peddler from Shilimpur New Road in Bogra town early Friday.
The deceased was identified as Rezaul Karim alias Dipjol, 38, reports our Bogra correspondent quoting Additional Superintendent of Police (Bogra Police circle) Sanatan Chakrabarty.
Rezaul, an accused in 10 cases filed at various times with the Bogra Sadar Police Station, was sent to a hospital where on-duty doctors declared him dead.
In Shariatpur, suspected drug dealer Ruhul Amin Bagha, 50, son of Moslem Bagha of Char Jushirgaon, was killed in a “gunfight” between his cohorts and detectives at Bhadrachapa area Gosairhat upazila, police claimed.
Abdul Momen, superintendent of Shariatpur police told our Faridpur correspondent that the gunfight took place when a DB team conducted a drive in the area around 2:00pm on Friday when the criminals opened fire at police who retaliated.
Ruhul was wanted in six drug-related cases, said police.
The killings have drawn huge outcry and criticism by rights defenders and activists since the operation began on May 4.
Yesterday, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein urged for greater engagement from Bangladesh with respect to human rights.
"I encourage greater engagement, particularly with respect to concerns about the shrinking space for civil society, and allegations of extrajudicial actions by the security forces," he said during the opening statement at the 38th session of the Human Rights Council.
With the recent killings, the tally of those killed in the anti-narcotics drive rose to 150, with most of the deaths attributed to “shootout” incidents involving law enforcers.