Bangladesh rejects India's smuggling allegation
Bangladesh has rejected an Indian allegation that Bangladesh Rifles provides protection to cattle smugglers on the border.india Updated: Jun 16, 2006 15:28 IST
Bangladesh has rejected an Indian allegation that Bangladesh Rifles (BDR) provides protection to cattle smugglers on the border.
The news agency BD News quoted a spokesperson of the foreign affairs ministry as saying that the allegation was "unwanted".
Quoting Border Security Force (BSF) officials, the Indian high commission in a press release on Wednesday blamed BDR men for the June 13 incident at Satkhira on the border, saying they had helped in the smuggling of cattle from India to Bangladesh.
Cattle smuggling is an old phenomenon along the India-Bangladesh border with millions of animals being transported illegally.
The demand goes up during the Eid festival when cattle are required for sacrifice.
The Bangladesh foreign affairs ministry spokesperson countered the allegation made by the Indian high commission in Dhaka by saying some 52 unarmed Bangladeshi civilians were shot dead by India's BSF between November 2005 and May 2006.
Asked if Bangladesh's position was conveyed to the Indian side, the spokesperson said they are "in close touch" with the Indian high commission, the Daily Star newspaper said.
India Wednesday strongly emphasised the "need for restraint and professional conduct by the BDR in order to ensure maintenance of peace and tranquility along the border with Bangladesh".