KOLKATA: A Bangladeshi man has been shot dead after Border Security Force (BSF) troops fired from a pump action gun to thwart a smuggling bid along the India-Bangladesh international border in West Bengal, the force said Sunday.
A BSF jawan also suffered minor injury on his ear after he was attacked by a smuggler with a 'dah' (a cleaver like chopper), it said.
"A suspected Bangladeshi smuggler has been killed in the Indian territory while he was trying to smuggle Phensedyl," the force said in a statement.
The incident took place around 10 PM Saturday when the troops of the 24th battalion were scanning the area near Gopalnagar post in Malda district for a cross-border smuggling attempt.
The BSF said a group of 10-12 Bangladeshi and Indian smugglers were noticed moving close to the border fence on either side and as soon as the troops challenged them, those on the Indian side fled after throwing a cache of Phensedyl bottles "on the fence".
The consignment got "entangled" in the fence and some Bangaldeshi men rushed to collect it, it said.
While some Bangaldeshi men started running away noticing BSF presence, one of them attacked a jawan, the force said.
"The BSF jawan while exercising the right of self-defence fired one round of non-lethal weapon called pump action gun to disperse the Bangladeshi smugglers.
" "If he would not have fired, the jawan may have been killed by the group of Bangladeshi smugglers," the BSF's south Bengal frontier said.
At least 75 bottles of Phensedyl cough syrup and a 'dah' have been recovered along with the body, it said.
The body has been handed over to the local police.
Phensedyl is a codeine-based cough syrup and abused as an intoxicant in the neighbouring country that follows liquor prohibition.
It is abused by youngsters and is "consumed in large quantity against the recommended small dose to get a kick", according to a recent BSF report.
The force said it is carrying out a 'zero trafficking' campaign along this front in West Bengal and it is "determined and committed" to this task.