Killing by BSF unacceptable
Killing and torture of Bangladesh nationals by India's Border Security Force (BSF) is not acceptable, Foreign Minister Dipu Moni said yesterday.
The government has been protesting such incidents, and India has promised to stop killings along the Bangladesh-India border, she said.
The minister was talking to journalists at the Circuit House in Chandpur after exchanging views with a cross section of people, reports UNB.
Dipu Moni also said both the governments are working to bring incidents of killing or torture to zero.
Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) Chief Maj Gen Anwar Hossain also echoed the foreign minister's stance that killing at the border under any circumstances is not acceptable.
“We condemn killing wherever it takes place including at the border,” he told UNB over the telephone responding to Indian BSF Chief U K Bansal's remark that firing at the border will not stop as they need to prevent the offenders.
“Our standpoint is very clear: We do not shoot. We do not shoot at Indian trespassers; we arrest them and try under the laws of our land. We strictly follow the International Human Rights convention,” he added.
The BGB director general also said if any Bangladeshi national illegally crosses the international boundary, he may be arrested and tried under the law of that country.
Replying to a question, Maj Gen Anwar said the BGB remains alert all the time. “We are constantly advising the frontier people not to cross the border illegally.”
Asked about the coordinated border management with Indian BSF, he said it has already started and so far 900 joint patrols have been carried out, improving the situation along the common border.
Maj Gen Anwar said the incidents of killing at the border are on the decline, mentioning that in the past two months two people were killed at the border.
“We have very cordial relations with our counterparts. If any incident happens, we hold flag meeting or local commander level meeting to resolve the problem instantly,” he said.
Meanwhile, BSF Chief U K Bansal yesterday again said that it would not be possible to put a total stop to the firing as long as there are illegal activities along the India-Bangladesh border.
“We are requesting the BGB authorities continuously to increase patrols along the border so that illegal border crossing does not happen,” Bansal told the BBC Bangla service.
He, however, said that BSF members have been instructed to use minimum force while tackling any trespass incident in the border areas.
The BSF chief said that section 144 remains in force along the India-Bangladesh border during the night hours. “So, when anyone attempts to cross the border illegally, we have to take necessary action against the trespassers.”
In another development, the Indian High Commission in Dhaka in a press release yesterday said the government of India is constrained at the rise in recent border incidents in which BSF jawans are being attacked with alarming regularity, emboldened by the restraint being maintained by BSF to avoid civilian casualties.
"This restraint has also resulted in an unprecedented spurt in incidents of fence cuttings, illegal crossings, attempts of dacoities and fatal attacks on BSF personnel deployed along the India-Bangladesh border," UNB quoted the release to be reading.
A group of "miscreants" from Bangladesh had encircled a BSF party near North Dinajpur and tried to snatch their weapons.