Brokers teach Rohingyas regional Bengali language and culture in Comilla


In Comilla, Bangladesh, an alarming trend has emerged, shedding light on a complex and illegal operation aimed at fraudulently obtaining citizenship for Rohingyas. Numerous training centers have been established near the Comilla Passport Office, where brokers are coaching Rohingyas in regional Bengali language, local culture, and other skills necessary to convincingly present themselves as Bangladeshi citizens. This revelation surfaced following the arrest of a Rohingya youth named Yashir and several members of a broker syndicate.

The scheme is highly sophisticated, involving multiple layers of training to help Rohingyas integrate seamlessly into Bangladeshi society. Brokers are teaching them the regional dialect of Comilla, local cultural nuances, and the specific questions they might encounter at investigating agencies, passport offices, and airports. This comprehensive training is part of a broader strategy to enable Rohingyas to convincingly pass themselves off as genuine Bangladeshi citizens.

The syndicates behind these operations are highly organized, having set up training centers where Rohingyas are instructed on various topics. These include the Bengali language, regional dialects, and the culture of Comilla and its surrounding areas. They are also taught how to forge signatures and write addresses in Bengali and are provided with detailed information about the family members whose birth certificates and national identity cards have been fraudulently edited in the server. This thorough preparation ensures that they can answer any questions posed by investigating agencies with confidence and precision.

However, recent intelligence operations have disrupted some of these activities. Law enforcement agencies have intensified their efforts against the Rohingya network, leading to the closure of several training centers. Despite this, some syndicates have merely relocated their operations to undisclosed locations, continuing their illicit activities under the radar.

The Faisal syndicate exemplifies this resilience. Faisal Ahmed, a key figure in the Rohingya network, and his associates were running a training center at their home in Brahmin Chapitla village, Muradnagar upazila. Faisal has a vast network and is committed to securing Bangladeshi citizenship for Rohingyas across the country. After serving three months in prison, Faisal has resumed his activities, with locals reporting frequent movements of unknown individuals to and from his house. Many of these individuals speak the regional dialect of Chittagong, indicating the broad reach of Faisal’s operations. Despite Faisal’s imprisonment, his syndicate members continued their activities, and Faisal himself has allegedly amassed considerable wealth from his involvement in the Rohingya scam.

Another significant player in this fraudulent scheme is the syndicate led by Shariful Islam. Although Shariful is currently in jail, his gang remains active, training Rohingyas in language and culture at secret locations. Shariful’s continued influence from behind bars underscores the challenges law enforcement faces in dismantling these entrenched networks.

In addition to these syndicates, individual brokers such as Rajan from Chiora area of Chauddagram upazila and Hares Chowdhury from Gauripur market of Daudkandi upazila are also heavily involved. Both have extensive networks and are reportedly the current go-to brokers for members of the Rohingya network. While both Rajan and Hares deny any involvement with the Rohingya gang, multiple sources confirm their active participation in the fraudulent citizenship scheme.

The operations of these syndicates are sophisticated and far-reaching. In exchange for substantial sums of money, they hack servers to alter birth certificates, national identity cards, and passports, thereby fabricating the necessary documents for Rohingyas to obtain Bangladeshi citizenship. The training centers play a crucial role in this scheme, equipping Rohingyas with the skills and knowledge needed to pass themselves off as native Bangladeshis convincingly.

The District Intelligence Branch (DB) is aware of these activities and has taken steps to address them. According to OC Rajesh Barua, a case has been filed against Mosharraf Hossain and Hasan Mahmud of Madina Tours and Travels, along with Faisal and Shariful, for their involvement in forgery and the Rohingya passport scam. Barua confirmed that these individuals are currently under surveillance, and the movements of those recently released from jail are being closely monitored. He also acknowledged that arrested brokers and Rohingyas have admitted to receiving training in language and culture, although the exact locations of these training centers remain undisclosed.

This situation highlights the ongoing challenges faced by Bangladeshi authorities in curbing illegal activities related to the Rohingya population. The training of Rohingyas in regional language and culture, combined with the sophisticated methods used to forge official documents, poses a significant threat to national security. The intelligence and law enforcement agencies must continue their efforts to identify and dismantle these syndicates to prevent further exploitation of the country’s resources and to maintain the integrity of Bangladeshi citizenship.

The fraudulent citizenship scheme involving Rohingyas in Comilla is a complex and deeply entrenched operation. Despite recent disruptions by law enforcement, the syndicates involved remain active, adapting their methods to evade detection. Continued vigilance and coordinated efforts are essential to combating this illegal activity and ensuring that the integrity of Bangladesh’s citizenship process is upheld.

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