South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

The deceased was identified as Babu, 18, son of Ekramul Haque, a resident of Maradhar village in Haripur upazila here. 

Locals said BSF members of Kokradah camp opened fire on a group of Bangladeshi nationals around 4 pm while they were returning to Bangladesh near border pillar no. 374, leaving Babu dead on the spot. Babu had crossed the border without valid documents, they added.  

Lt Col Tuhin Mohammad Masud, commander of BGB Thakurgaon-50 Battalion, said they have learned about the firing. “We called a flag meeting with BSF on Tuesday,” he said

On January 18, Bangladeshi youth Jahangir Alam Raju , 21, son of Badsha Mia, a resident of Shahanabad village in the same upazila was shot dead by BSF inside Indian territory along Dharmagarh border. 

Jahangir died on the spot while some others managed to flee.

On January 22, Jenarul, son of Tofail of Taldangi village in Haripur upazila, was shot dead by BSF. 

Although all the killings have occurred on Indian soil and the victims were there illegally, it is doubtful that they posed any threat to the BSF jawans, who must perceive a threat to their own security before engaging their firearms in such situations.

After dropping to their lowest level in 2018 since records started being kept, the 3 killings in the space of just 10 days, may represent an unwelcome reversal of that in 2019.

The BSF was termed “trigger happy” by Human Rights Watch in 2010, when border killings of Bangladeshis by BSF were far more frequent. According to Odhikar, Dhaka-based human rights advocates, 74 Bangladeshis were killed in BSF firing that year, and the number was 98 in 2009. 

Last year, the number of such killings dropped to 11. 

Updated On: 29 January, 2019