NEW DELHI: India and Bangladesh on Friday agreed to bring down casualties on the borders while taking strong measures for prevention of illegal border crossing and human trafficking.
During the 47th Border Co-ordination Conference between India's Border Security Force (BSF) and Border Guard Bangladesh held from September 3-8, the two sides also agreed to take several steps together to take prevent killings on the International Border. It was agreed that willful violation of the sanctity of the IB would be dealt with as per respective law of the land and inadvertent crossers would be handed over to the concerned border guarding force immediately.
Md. Shafeenul Islam, Director General, Border Guard Bangladesh (DG BGB) led the Bangladesh delegation to India while the Indian delegation was led by KK Sharma, Director General (DG), BSF.
Appreciating the steps taken by BSF in bringing down casualties on borders, DG BGB Islam expressed his concern to bring it down to zero. Responding to him DG BSF Sharma stated that BSF uses non-lethal weapons on borders, with utmost restraint and minimum possible force is used even in the face of dangerous assaults by armed criminals. He added that violence on the border could be brought down to zero level only when the criminals/ offenders are stopped from crossing the International Border illegally and persecuted as per law of the land.
Appreciating the cooperation extended by BGB and other security agencies of Bangladesh against Indian Insurgent Groups (IIG's), Sharma sought further cooperation from BGB to eliminate remnant IIG's. DG BGB informed that there is no IIG's hideout inside Bangladesh and clarified that "Bangladesh does not allow its soil to be used by any entities or elements hostile to any country".
Both sides agreed to take strong measures for prevention of illegal border crossing and human trafficking. Both the delegations agreed to aid victims of human trafficking and facilitate their early rescue and rehabilitation.
During the talks, Sharma expressed concern about increase in smuggling of Fake Indian Currency Note (FICN). He appreciated the efforts of BGB and other security forces of Bangladesh against smuggling of fake currency note and sought further cooperation in detecting such units in Bangladesh and legal prosecution of defaulters.
Responding to Sharma, Islam said that Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) of Bangladesh are taking actions against Fake Currency Note(FCN) racketeers and side by side government has already placed FCN detecting machines in all Integrated Check Posts(ICPs) and many other places across the country. Both sides appreciated each other's efforts to curb the smuggling of FICN into India and smuggling of phensedyl and other psychotropic substances to Bangladesh.
The two sides lauded the results of crime free zone which had been introduced in South Bengal Frontier/ South West Region and agreed for its further expansion in other Frontiers/ Regions. They appreciated the efforts made to improve mutual relations through various agreed upon Confidence Building Measures (CBMs). Both sides agreed for expeditious implementation of the decisions taken in the conference. It was decided that next DG-level conference would be held in Dhaka in the month of March/ April 2019.