BSF told to open fire only in self defence: Chidambaram
India's Border Security Force (BSF) has been instructed not to fire at people trying to cross over, but they may open fire to protect themselves and in self-defence, home minister P Chidambaram said here today.world Updated: Jul 30, 2011 16:02 IST
India's Border Security Force (BSF) has been instructed not to fire at people trying to cross over, but they may open fire to protect themselves and in self-defence, home minister P Chidambaram said here Saturday.
Chidambaram said that "clear instructions" have been given to the Indian border guards not to open fire on any unarmed people at the border, the Daily Star reported.
"Let me make it very clear, we have issued strict instructions to our border security forces that in no circumstances should they fire upon anyone trying to cross either from Bangladesh to India or India to Bangladesh. The message has gone down to the last jawan," he said.
"After the instructions, the numbers of incidents came down dramatically. There are only seven cases this year compared to last year’s 33,” he added at a press conference here after holding talks with his Bangladeshi home minister Sahara Khatun.
He stressed that “the only circumstance in which India have said firing may be justified is when a gang actually attacks a BSF jawan or an office. Then, he has to protect himself and fire in self-defence.”
During the meeting, major general Anwar Hussain, director general of Border Guard Bangladesh, and BSF chief Raman Srivastava signed the Coordinated Border Management Plan (CBMP). Both countries expect this will further enhance the quality of border management.
Sahara Khatun led a 17-member Bangladesh team while Chidambaram led his 12-member delegation at the talks.
Bangladesh and India signed the agreement so as to reduce incidents of killings and crime along the border. Border guards of both countries will now exchange information on vulnerable areas to ensure joint patrolling in a coordinated manner.