The Financial Express


Muggers getting smarter to defend themselves

Nilratan Halder | Published: August 24, 2018 19:59:31

Muggers getting smarter to defend themselves

Muggers these days are particularly active. Ahead of the two Eids, beggars and muggers mill into the city in great numbers. As people move with cash of bigger amounts before the Eid-ul-Azha, the muggers target such people. There are the malam (balm) party, doping party and even the more daring of the lot who snatch money wielding knives or even firearms. This latest category does not stop short of wounding or even killing their victims to get their end.

However the other two parties try their tricks as subtly as possible in order to rob people of money and other valuables. Their overdose however can bring an end to the lives of their victims. The balm party simply applies the substance to their target usually in desolate roads or corners all on a sudden to make the victim literally blind for sometime. Struggling to see what is happening he becomes even more incapacitated and the muggers take opportunity of his helplessness to mug him. By the way have you noticed till now no woman or girl has been targeted by the malamparty? The doping party use sedative for mugging. Usually such gangs try to collect authentic information about their targeted persons on a long route. They manage bus tickets next to the seat of the person of their target. At one point they persuade the man to share their food. If the man swallows the bait, it takes not long for him to lose consciousness. The gang takes the money and get off the bus at the earliest stops of their convenience.

The majority of these muggers operate under a well-orchestrated network. They have their territories demarcated as those were among the underworld gangs committing crimes of all kinds including collection of extortion. Not all the mugging incidents get media coverage. But those that get are enough to convince that they are skilled enough to perform their criminal act in perfect clinical manner. Understanding, cooperation and coordination among them are inch-perfect. It is because of this, they can outsmart the law enforcers. But if the law enforcement agencies are really serious about rooting out this bane, there is reason to believe they can. Why they are not keen to do so is rather a mystery.

In fact, muggers are most of the time like old wine in new bottles. A report carried in a contemporary has an answer how this happens. Their strong network is not only involved in getting their job done by any means, but also aimed at securing their future as well during the rainy days. How?

Believe it or not, they have arranged for a welfare fund lest they run short of money in emergency. A gang of eight muggers caught by one of the intelligence branches from Jatrabari and New Market disclosed that they deposit a certain portion of their illegal proceeds in the welfare fund. On Sunday, Tk. 800,000 was recovered from the gang under this head. This is indication enough that their illegal income is sizeable.

The gang use money from the welfare fund for welfare purposes, no doubt. One of these is to fight legal battles when their members get caught. They even use the money for treatment of their injured colleagues when they receive mob beating. Clearly, they demonstrate great camaraderie among themselves in order to protect their fellow members. By protecting their members they actually protect their own interests. This explains why muggers often come out of prison and then again start doing the criminal practice. The punitive provision for mugging is also not adequate. It is time the penalty for the crime was reviewed so that it acted as a kind of deterrent. Muggers are well organised to get on with their dubious vocation. The law enforcement agencies will not be able to get the better of them each time of committing crime unless the legal provision helps.

Many families are ruined when muggers kill the bread earners during their nefarious operation. When such a killing takes place, it is no longer a trivial crime where the perpetrator can be allowed to live a free life. So the legal parameters should be redrawn here.



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