West Bengal-based rights group MASUM has demanded a thorough investigation into the extrajudicial killing of a Bangladeshi cattle carrier by the BSF in “self-defence” along Satkhira border last month.
Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM) on Friday also appealed to the National Human Rights Commission of India to launch a magisterial enquiry as per the revised guidelines issued by the NHRC on December 2, 2003 in case of encounter deaths so that the people are assured that rule of law rather than the rule of gun is operative.
MASUM demands that the authorities concerned be directed to take other action under the above guidelines to find out the possibility of any foul play in the extrajudicial killing of the victim, Md Moslem Sardar, 31.
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Son of Md Johar Ali of Panchroki village under Satkhira sadar upazila, Moslem died on the spot after a patrol team of BSF’s Amudia camp fired at a group of smugglers who were going back to Bangladesh with cattle around 4:30am on November 15.
The body was handed over to the Border Guard Bangladesh officials on November 18.
According to MASUM’s fact finding team, the BSF submitted a written complaint before the Swarupnagar police under North 24 Parganas stating that they had been compelled to fire “one round from PAG gun” in self-defence causing death of the victim inside the Indian territory.
“The post-mortem examination was held on November 15 at Basirhat Hospital. As the victim sustained gunshot injury on the back side of his head, it is clear that the victim was shot while he was leaving the place of occurrence; not in a position that he was attacking the BSF personnel,” MASUM said in the complaint.
On the BSF complaint, Swarupnagar police filed two cases – one for unnatural death and another criminal case.
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The investigation of the said cases is pending with Swarupnagar police and “no enquiry or investigation took place till date in compliance with the NHRC’s ‘Revised Guidelines/Procedures to be followed in courses of deaths caused in police action,’” MASUM said.
“The incident proves that the BSF personnel are violating their own mandate regarding the use of lethal weapons at the Indo-Bangla border.”
Swarupnagar police and the BSF outposts under North 24 Parganas have long been accused of arresting Bangladesh nationals arbitrarily, filing criminal cases without investigation and sending them to correctional homes, instead of keeping them at shelter homes and arranging their quick repatriation.