Four suspected members of a notorious Rohingya robbery gang were killed in a “gunfight” with police in a remote forest in the district’s Ukhiya upazila yesterday.
The dead are Bashir Ahmed, Hamid Hossain, Royingya, and Mohammed Rafiq, all Ronhigyas from Myanmar and aged between 35 and 45.
Police said the four were active members of Rohingya robbery gang “Hakim Bahini”. Deceased Bashir and Hamid are younger brothers of Abdul Hakim alias Hakim Dakat, the chief of the gang, they said.
Teknaf OC Pradip Kumar Das said they had been conducting drives in different hills of the upazila for several months to nab the members of “Hakim Bahini” as they created panic among the local people by carrying out kidnapping and killing.
Around 1:00pm yesterday, a police team conducted a drive in the hilly areas of Cheptakhali forest near Monkhali of Ukhiya upazila on information that Hakim Dakat and some of his associates were staying there.
Sensing the presence of the law enforcers, the criminals opened fire at the police team. The cops fired retaliatory shots, triggering the “gunfight”, said the OC.
After the gunfight was over, police recovered the bullet-hit bodies of Bashir, Hamid, Rafique and Royingya. They claimed to have recovered four shotguns, 20 bullets and 40,000 yaba pills from the spot.
The bodies were sent to Cox’s Bazar District Hospital morgue last night for autopsies.
According to police, members of “Hakim Bahini” have been staying in the hills around the Rohingya refugee camps in Teknaf and Ukhiya for the last few years. The gang often kidnap local people and collect ransom money from their relatives.
The gang kidnapped seven Bangladeshis in the last two months. Three of them were killed and the rest freed after ransoms were paid to the kidnappers, police added.
On August 25 last year, Abdul Hakim’s wife Rubi Akhter, 25, and his two other younger brothers — Kabir Ahmed and Nazir Ahmed — were killed in another “gunfight” with police.