Contraband yaba tablets are increasingly getting popular among young people nowadays in different parts of the world, including Bangladesh. This country is being used as a transit point for trafficking the tablets involving many southeast Asian markets. In fact, our beloved country is touted to be a safe route for yaba drug dealers. Most of these pills come from neighbouring Myanmar, India and even from distant Laos. The yaba tablets are smuggled into Bangladesh using the vast bordering areas, waterways and airways.
This contraband drug is also trafficked to some other countries, including the developed ones, using different routes. The vast forests and terrain areas of hill tracts and the Bangladeshi, Myanmar and Thai fishing trawlers are being used these days to traffic the drug item to Bangladesh. Considering the land route unsafe, the organised gangs of drug smugglers are using water and air routes for trafficking the deadly drugs.
Of late, Bangladesh has emerged as one of the main yaba markets in the world. Two apparent factors are contributing to the growth of yaba consumption here. The first one is the prevalence of a criminal and illicit connection between the law enforces and smugglers. And the second one is the geographical location of Bangladesh, which is very suitable for the drug dealers to use this country as an international route.
As per research findings, almost 50 routes along the borders of Bangladesh are being used for yaba pills to enter this territory. Some of the international routes are often referred as Golden Triangle, Golden Wage and Golden Crescent. As a result, Bangladesh has become a primary choice for international drug dealers to traffic the contraband drug item to and from the outside world. The drug cartels smuggle amphetamines into Bangladesh from Myanmar and India. Then they supply those to different parts of the country - using a strong chain of dealers.
As we know, Bangladesh is used by the international drugs syndicate as a transit country to move narcotics from Myanmar to different destinations. A section of the greedy traders and international gangs are involved in peddling yaba tablets illegally. They employ young boys and girls, mostly students, to conduct their business. An internal security report revealed that the yaba pills flooded the country due to lax security. A large number of women, students and even teens are also involved in selling the contraband drug, which is often considered as a powerful stimulant.
The diverse types with different prices of yaba pills are available in the country. A yaba tablet, depending on its type, is currently sold at any price between Tk 250 and Tk 350. The youth population is becoming highly addicted to it due to wider-open availability of this 'sexually arousing' pill. Consequently, they are falling prey to serious physical and psychological health hazards. They are also becoming prone to various complex diseases like kidney and liver infection, sleeping problems and lower back pain, among others.
A long term user may also suffer from hair loss. This happens either as a direct result of the contraband drug intake or indirectly if the user becomes a bit withdrawn and anxious and starts contracting behavioural changes like hair pulling. Yaba tablets, indeed, are increasingly posing a great threat to the valuable lives of our young generation. They are being completely exploited and manipulated by this item. To save our young generation and our future leaders from getting ruined, the government needs to focus on some stringent steps through which the accessibility of yaba pills to young people can be zeroed down.
Sarwar Md. Saifullah Khaled is a retired Professor of Economics.
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