Bangladesh Police Make Arrests Over Fake Rohingya ID

By Muktadir Rashid   6 February 2023

Dhaka – Bangladeshis are being arrested for allegedly providing Rohingya refugees with Bangladeshi identity cards, birth registrations and passports.

The authorities in the port city of Chattogram, also known as Chittagong, have reported that the birth registration card application services have been compromised.

Bangladesh police claim many Rohingya are hoping to retain Bangladeshi passports to reach relatives in Malaysia and elsewhere.

“They need passports so they want Bangladeshi birth registrations,” a police officer told The Irrawaddy.

Chattogram police said 10 Bangladeshis have been arrested since late January for helping Rohingyas to attain Bangladeshi identities.

On February 2 the Chattogram police arrested three Bangladeshis – Mohammad Arif, 27, and Md Jashim Uddin, 30, of Cox’s Bazar and Mohammad Tareq, 29, of Cumilla —for allegedly helping Rohingya to acquire birth certificates, national identity cards and passports using fake addresses in Chattogram.

Inspector Nur Ahmed of Chattogram police told The Irrawaddy that the syndicate arranged birth registration cards, identification cards and passports for US$400-700.

On January 25 Chattogram counterterrorism police arrested Bangladeshi citizens Moni Devi, 38, and Md Rakib Hossain, 27, in the city for allegedly making fake birth registration cards using different addresses in Chattogram.

On January 23 the department made four more arrests over the alleged making of fake birth registration cards using different addresses.

In October last year Chattogram police said they broke a syndicate with 10 members, including a former primary school teacher and staff from the Election Commission and the Dhaka North City Corporation, that forged documents for Rohingyas.

The police said forged birth certificates for Rohingya cost $15 and $1,300 for an original ID card.

Those arrested included Md Yasin Arafat, Md Nur Nabi, Md Mizanur Rahman, Farhadul Islam and Emon Das who were data entry operators for the Election Commission on a contract basis and two Rohingyas, Md Kamal Hossain and Parvin Akter, who were hoping to attain Bangladeshi citizenship.

Kamal and Parvin said that they had been living in Bangladesh since 2017.

Former teacher Shamsur Rahman was suspended in 2019 after facing similar charges from the Anti-Corruption Commission.

Nurul Abser and Shamsur had a deal with the Election Commission employees for listing the Rohingyas as Bangladeshi citizens, the police claimed.