Bangladesh has expressed disappointment at the remark of Director-General of Border Security Force (BSF) U.K. Bansal over firing in the border.
In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, “It notes with disappointment that the remarks of the DG, BSF, are markedly at variance with the assurances given to Bangladesh at various levels, including at the highest level, on several occasions.”
The BSF chief, in an interview with the BBC Bengali Service on Tuesday said, “Firing in the border can never be stopped totally… So long as criminal activities continue to take place along the India-Bangladesh border, the BSF will have to prevent those offences and it is the duty of the force.”
The statement, released on Saturday, said Bangladesh's concern was brought to the attention of the Indian side at various forums and Bangladesh was assured by the Indian leadership that maximum restraint would be exercised by BSF personnel.
On Thursday, Foreign Minister Dipu Moni said, “The Bangladesh government has been continuously protesting against these incidents of killing, firing and torture [by BSF]. The Indian government agrees with the Bangladesh government that these incidents in the border areas will not occur.” The two governments were trying to end such border killing.
Director-General of the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) Major General Anwar Hossain said such killings were not acceptable. “Our standpoint is very clear. We do not shoot. We do not shoot at Indian trespassers. We arrest and try them under the laws of our land. We strictly follow the International Human Rights convention,” he told a news agency.
The recent alleged savage treatment of a Bangladesh cattle trader by BSF men and the remarks of the BSF chief have triggered protests from civil society leaders and political parties.
Bangladesh's National Human Rights Commission chairman Mizanur Rahman also protested at the BSF chief's statement, saying shooting at civilians in the border was a violation of international law. He believed that such remarks would adversely affect the relationship between the two countries.
Local media reported on Sunday that a Bangladeshi woman was chased, captured and tortured by BSF men in Benapole border on Saturday.
The Daily Star, quoting a local commander of the BGB, said BSF men beat Halima and left her in near senseless state on Saturday at Petrapole opposite to the check post. Quoting locals, the newspaper reported that Halima was near the Bangladesh-India railway line close to Benapole check post when a team of BSF patrol team chased and caught her.
Keywords: Indo-Bangladesh ties