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Bangla crime kingpin held

Bangladeshi criminal Subrata Baine, who had allegedly masterminded a grenade attack on an Awami League rally killing 24 people in 2004 and fled a Nepal jail earlier this month digging an 80ft tunnel, has been arrested from Bowbazar, Calcutta police said on Tuesday.

“The Special Task Force of Calcutta police arrested Subrata Baine from the Bowbazar area. He had fled Jhumka jail in Sunsari district of Nepal along with at least a dozen others,” said police commissioner R.K. Pachnanda.

The cops did not say where in Bowbazar Baine alias Mohammad Ali alias Shubhra alias Fateh was arrested. He is wanted in at least 40 cases of murder and extortion in Bangladesh.

Baine had been arrested in Calcutta in 2008 but sneaked out of the country after procuring bail.

Sources in the STF said that after his escape from the Nepal jail on November 8, Baine had taken shelter in Malda, from where he had come to Suri in Birbhum. Baine had apparently entered Calcutta in the second week of November.

“We seized Rs 11.02 lakh in fake Indian notes, some Nepali currency and a loaded improvised pistol from his possession,” said Pachnanda.

Baine, who hails from Barishal in Bangladesh, allegedly used to run a cross-border extortion and arms smuggling racket.

“His victims were mainly Bangladeshi businessmen now based in eastern India. He had also been supplying arms to various outfits in India,” said an STF officer.

According to sources, Baine had been trying to expand his crime network to China, Dubai and Singapore. He is also a suspect in the murder of an Awami League leader.

A case has been slapped on Baine for possession of counterfeit notes, criminal conspiracy, and under arms and foreigners’ acts in Bowbazar police station. He will be produced in court on Wednesday.

A red-corner notice (a lookout notice issued by the Interpol to sound an alert about a criminal who had evaded a country) had been issued in his name, said Pachnanda.

Minister’s visit

Transport Minister Madan Mitra visited the Rajarhat house of Gopal Dey, 47, a CTC employee who had committed suicide on November 20 allegedly because of non-payment of salary for three months. Mitra handed over Rs 20,000 to Gopal’s widow China. He, however, denied lapses in the payment of Dey’s salary.