Biman, Dhaka airport authorities refute footballers' luggage tampering claims

Allegations that the bags of the SAFF Championship-winning women's football team were broken into at the airport sparked an uproar

Senior Correspondent
Published : 22 Sept 2022, 11:19 AM
Updated : 22 Sept 2022, 11:19 AM

Biman Bangladesh Airlines and Shahjalal International Airport authorities said there was 'no truth' to the allegations that the SAFF Championship-winning women's football team had their luggage broken into and money stolen at the airport after returning from Nepal.

On Thursday, the team's coach Golam Rabbani said he heard claims that Shamsunnahar and Krishna Rani Sarkar's bags were cut open and US dollars were stolen.

Fullback Shamsunnahar told several media outlets that dollars and local currency worth around Tk 250,000 were stolen from her bag. The locks on the luggage of a few other footballers were broken.

In the face of a public uproar, the national flag carrier and the airport authorities issued separate statements to refute the allegations.

The aircraft that brought the players home from Nepal left the airport after the Bangladesh Football Federation's protocol representative and two team officials inspected the luggage tags and found them fully intact and locked, the airport's Executive Director Md Kamrul Islam said.

BFF representatives and the players collected their luggage in proper condition, according to Tahera Khondker, Biman’s general manager of public relations. No complaints were lodged regarding the loss of any belongings from the baggage when they were collected.

“BFF representatives left the airport with the luggage loaded onto two vans. After reviewing the CCTV footage from various parts of the airport, the allegations were not found to be true."

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher