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17 October, 2019 08:47:05 PM
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BSF soldier killed, another injured in fire exchange with BGB on Rajshahi border

Special Correspondent, Dhaka
BSF soldier killed, another injured in fire exchange with BGB on Rajshahi border
File Photo

A member of the Indian Border Security Force (BSF) was killed and another injured during an exchange of fire with Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) at Char Paikmari (also known as Kakmarichar) border in Rajshahi district yesterday over detention of an Indian fisherman for illegal fishing in Bangladesh waters.

Indian media identified the deceased BSF member as BSF 117 Battalion Head Constable Vijay Bhan Singh, who got shot in the head, and the injured as Constable Rajvir Yadav, who has sustained bullet injury on his arm.

After the incident, a flag meeting was held at the border to calm the situation, said BGB sources. Talking to The Independent, public relation officer of BGB Shariful said an inquiry committee would be formed to investigate the exchange of gunfire between the two friendly neighbouring border forces.

Sources said a BGB team confronted three Indian fishermen who were illegally fishing in Bangladesh waters on the River Padma with BSF approval. One fisherman was detained by the BGB while the two others managed to flee and called in nearby BSF Forces. Shortly, a 6-member BSF team led by post commander of the 117th battalion arrived at Char Paikmari on a motor-boat. 
Once on the island, the BSF team began hurling abuse at the BGB for making the arrest and created a heated environment, said a BGB source. As the BGB members protested such behaviour, the BSF members became angry and opened fire, prompting the Bangladesh border guards to return fire in defence. At one point, the BSF men retreated and returned to post on their boat, with one member dead and one injured in the firefight.

The "apparent high handedness" of the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) troops has led to tension between the two sides with BSF chief V K Johri calling up his counterpart Major General Shafeenul Islam over a hotline, according to Indian Media reports. The BGB DG has assured the BSF chief of forming a probe body to investigate the incident, they reported.

The relations between the two forces have been very cordial and no bullet has been fired between them for decades. This incident is an aberration and efforts are being made to ensure that the situation does not deteriorate, official sources told Indian media. 
The 3-km wide Padma River has Bangladesh and India on two sides and the river is shared by both. The river holds a plentiful supply of hilsa fish, a delicacy in both the countries. 
Bangladesh government has imposed a 22-day ban on hilsa fishing from October 9 in a 7,000km breeding ground including the Padma River, to ensure safe spawning of the fish during its peak breeding period.

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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