Arrested Awami League leader and Ward Councillor Habibur Rahman Mizan alias "Pagla Mizan" was a top drug dealer, according to a list of the home ministry.
He used to operate the capital's largest narcotics business at the Geneva Camp, also known as the Bihari Camp, in Mohammadpur.
In the last decade, he allegedly earned crores of taka through performing different illegal activities, including drug dealing, extortion, tender manipulation and land encroachment.
Reportedly, he has luxurious residences in Australia and Canada. Pagla Mizan is also accused in an attempted murder of Sheikh Hasina.
He was once an active hooligan of the Freedom Party which was formed by captain Khandaker Abdur Rashid, colonel Sayed Farook Rahman and major Bazlul Huda – the killers of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in 1975.
Mizan later found a refuge in the Awami League through an Awami League's influential leader.
He established a special terror gang after becoming a commissioner in 1994, according to sources at law enforcing agencies.
Recently, the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) has arrested the ward-32 councillor of the Dhaka North City Corporation. Reportedly, he had been performing all illegal activities under the political backup of an influential leader of the ruling party.
Only has the narcotics business at the Geneva Camp yielded a huge fortune to Pagla Mizan. There is an allegation that he has laundered a large sum of money abroad.
Mizan's gang of criminals hurled petrol bombs at law enforcers while they were raiding the Geneva Camp during a massive drive at the camp on October 5 last.
Pagla Mizan's political leap
Originally Mizanur Rahman Mizan, he was once involved in the politics of the Jatiya Samajtantrik Dal (JSD). Later, he joined the Freedom Party after getting expelled from the JSD.
Pagla Mizan was the Dhanmondi-Mohammadpur coordinator of the Freedom Party at that time. As a member of the party, he also took guerrilla training in Libya.
He was jointly accused with his younger brother – Mostafizur Rahman Mostofa – in a failed murder attempt of Sheikh Hasina at Dhanmondi in 1989.
Locals said Pagla Mizan changed his name to Habibur Rahman Mizan and, at an opportune moment, intruded into the Awami League. Later, he became the general secretary of the party's Mohammadpur unit.
Allegations against Pagla Mizan
A number of cases and general diaries on charges of killing and threats to murder have been filed against Mizan with several police stations in the capital, including Mohammadpur, Dhanmondi and Savar.
He had alleged involvement into an attack on the Dhanmondi office of the Awami League and a bomb strike and firing on the Bangabandhu Bhaban on 32 Dhanmondi in the city.
The armed attack was carried out by a Freedom Party racket comprising 10-12 members led by party members Kajal and Kabir.
Awami League President Sheikh Hasina narrowly escaped death as she had been staying on the first floor of the building at that time.
Following the incident, a case was filed with the Dhanmondi Police Station against 16 people. The charge-sheet in the case mentioned Pagla Mizan's younger brother Mostafizur Rahman Mostofa as the key conniver and assailant.
Later, Mostofa was killed during a party infighting. Pagla Mizan, during giving his witness in the Mostofa murder case, admitted to the court that he was informed about the attack on Sheikh Hasina.
For the last one decade, Mizan had been controlling a part of the Geneva Camp. He screwed cash out of the pucca portion of the camp and shops inside. He used to control the fish market there too.
He had also a business of providing illegal gas connections.
On Friday last, a RAB team arrested Mizan from one of his friends' house in Sreemangal. RAB officers found an unlicensed pistol, four bullets, a magazine and Tk2 lakh in cash in his possession.
Taking him along, the RAB started searching his flat on the Aurangzeb Road in Dhanmondi around 3:30pm the same day and continued it for nearly four hours.
Lt Col Ashik Billah, chief executive officer of the RAB-2, said they have lodged two cases against Mizan on charges of possessing illegal arms and laundering money.
According to the case statement at the Mohammadpur Police Station, the RAB recovered cheques of different banks, including the Standard Bank, Premier Bank, Basic Bank, Social Islami Bank, Pubali Bank and Dutch Bangla Bank.
The elite force also seized bank cheques and fixed deposit receipts worth about Tk7.7 crore from his Mohammadpur apartment.