( Bandarban, 6 February 2014) : A combined armed forces led by Bangladesh Army destroyed 59 poppy fields in some remote areas along the Bangladesh-Burma border in the last few days.
The joint team comprising the personnel from the Bangladesh Army, Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) and Bangladesh police conducted the drive in Panjhiri, Bulu Para and Laikrejhiri, said a Bangladesh armed force report.
The affected areas are inside the Sangu reserve forest in Bandarban district under southern Chittagong hill tract. Adjacent to the international border, the areas are opposite to Kyauk Taw and Buthidaung of Burma.
The combined armed forces started its drive on 22 January and continued till 5 February last to chop down the plants in more than 14 acres, which were later destroyed by setting on fire.
The cross-border illegal drug syndicates are engaged in the cultivation of poppy plants, where local and indigenous people are being lured with money for the use of their land in those remote areas.
The practice is going on for more than 12 years in the international borders areas of Bangladesh, Burma and India. The poverty stricken villagers agree to the proposal as the poppy can bring little more money than other normal crops.
However, the poppy plants from these localities are not used for producing heroin; rather those are used locally by the villagers for traditional medicines.