Border killing up in 2019

Ahamed Ullah

18 January, 2020 12:00 AM printer

The number of deaths along the Bangladesh-India border went up as at least 35 Bangladeshis were killed in 2019 against 3 in 2018.

Indian Border Security Force (BSF) killed the Bangladeshis along the 4,096-kilometer borderline.

In most cases, death takes place when Bangladeshi people attempt to enter India illegally, according to Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB).

On January 2, Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) Director General Major General Shafeenul Islam said the number of deaths in borderline was 35 in 2019.

The number is the highest in the last four years, he said.

BGB DG said: “We have informed BSF of the issue. They have been requested to take necessary measures to reduce the border killing to zero. The BSF chief also assured us.”

Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal, in July last year, told parliament that a total of 294 Bangladeshi was killed by the Indian Border Security Force (BSF) along the border in the last 10 years.

According to the statistics placed by the minister, at least 66 Bangladeshi nationals were killed along the Bangladesh-India border in 2009, 55 in 2010, 24 each in 2011 and 2012, 18 in 2013, 24 in 2014, 38 in 2015, 25 in 2016, 17 in 2017, and only 3 in 2018.

He further said the BGB had been making all-out efforts to stop border killings by BSF.

Around 95 percent of the shootings occurred due to cattle smuggling through the border. However, the number of cattle smuggling has dropped drastically in the last few years as India stopped exporting cows and Bangladesh has increased cattle raising substantially, BGB sources said.

Security expert Major General (Retd) Md Abdur Rashid told daily sun: “In most cases general people becomes the victim of killing in the border. Lethal weapons are used in the bordering areas. So, it is necessary to use non-lethal weapon along the borderline to bring down the killing incidents.”

Shipa Hafiza, executive director of Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK), said the killings on the border have increased greatly in the last one year. Shooting was a serious human rights violation. Instead, he/she should be arrested and brought under trial according to the laws of the two countries, she suggested.