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Report on human rights violations at India-Bangladesh border

Dec 16, 2010

The report ‘Trigger Happy': Excessive Use of Force by Indian Troops at the Bangladesh Border by Human Rights Watch examines numerous cases of human rights violations by the security forces deployed at India Bangladesh border.

BangladeshCoverWeb.jpg‘Trigger Happy': Excessive Use of Force by Indian Troops at the Bangladesh Border

Published by: Human Rights Watch, 2010

Kolkata:  India and Bangladesh should take immediate steps to end the killing of hundreds of their citizens at the West Bengal-Bangladesh border by India's Border Security Force (BSF), Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Indian government should prosecute BSF soldiers responsible for serious human rights abuses, Human Rights Watch said.

The 81-page report, "‘Trigger Happy': Excessive Use of Force by Indian Troops at the Bangladesh Border," documents the situation on the border region, where both Bangladesh and India have deployed border guards to prevent infiltration, trafficking, and smuggling. Human Rights Watch found numerous cases of indiscriminate use of force, arbitrary detention, torture, and killings by the security force, without adequate investigation or punishment. The report is based on over 100 interviews with victims, witnesses, human rights defenders, journalists, law- enforcement officials, and Border Security Force and Bangladesh Rifles' (BDR) members.

"The border force seems to be out of control, with orders to shoot any suspect," said Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director at Human Rights Watch. "The border operations ignore the most basic rule of law, the presumption of innocence."

Since both Indians and Bangladeshis have fallen prey to this excessive use of force, both governments need to open a joint independent investigation to turn the situation around, Human Rights Watch said.

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