Brothers in ‘harms’: Cousin Hyder Ali running Pakhi Miyan’s drug racket
Drug kingpin Samsul Haque Talukdar alias Pakhi Miyan, whose name has popped up in connection with several crimes ranging from drug smuggling, murder and robbery has apparently handed over the reins of his activities to his cousin Hyder Ali.
“According to our inputs, it is Ali who is running Miyan’s ganja racket now. We had put Miyan under close watch for quite some time. There is no involvement of drug-related activities from him in a long time. But his cousin’s name has come up a few times,” a source in the Narcotics Control Bureau said.
Ali’s name first came onto the police radar in 2009 after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had charge sheeted him along with Miyan and another cousin Ajit Singh alias Santosh Singh, in connection with the murder of an official of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in 2006. While Miyan had already been arrested when the charge sheet was filed, Ali and Singh were absconding.
He was later arrested in Barasat, a town on the outskirts of Kolkata in West Bengal in 2009 and was eventually acquitted due to lack of evidence by the Barasat Sessions Court.
The modus operandi of smuggling the drugs by Ali has, however, changed from what it used to be under Miyan’s regime, the source revealed.
While Miyan used to procure the ganja from Manipur, Ali has shifted to Tripura to procure the contrabands.
“Earlier, the ganja was grown and sold by terrorist outfits in Manipur and Miyan used to procure those from them to sell in the rest of the northeast and Bengal. Back then, there were at least 25 such outfits active. Things have changed over time and Tripura has emerged as the next biggest grower of ganja in the northeast. Ali now funds the locals to grow the ganja in the hills and forests of Tripura,” the source said.
Recently, the NCB had destroyed one such ganja cultivation believed to be funded by Ali inside the Sipahijala Wildlife Sanctuary in West Tripura district, about 35 kms from the state capital, Agartala.
The NCB, however, did not rule out the fact that Miyan might be remote controlling Ali’s operations.
“Many past operatives of Miyan’s gang are still involved in the operations. So, it is possible that Miyan is still remotely controlling it,” the source said.
Miyan, who is believed to be heading the biggest drug cartel of northeast, was first arrested in 2008 by the West Bengal police from Barrackpore with 10 kgs of ganja and 200 gms of heroin and later was handed over to Assam Police.
He, however, managed to make a Mr Natwarlal style escape from Gauhati Medical College & Hospital where he was sent from the Central Jail for diabetes and hernia check-up. He escaped by allegedly drugging the security officials deputed to him. He was, later in 2008, arrested from Durgapur in West Bengal.
Miyan was suspected to be involved in three murders - that of DRI official Tarun Kumar Dutta, AGP leader Habib Ali and the journalist of a local vernacular daily, Muslimuddin Ahmed. He served jail terms for various drug trafficking related cases till 2017.
In May 2017, his name came up when the police asked the Chief Judiciary Magistrate Court to allow five days’ remand to question him in connection with a robbery on GS Road. The police were allowed to question Miyan inside the Central Jail where he denied any involvement.
In December last year, after being out on bail, Miyan had a close shave when he was fired at by armed assailants suspected to be from a rival drug gang but the bullet just grazed by his arm causing a flesh wound.