The 43rd director general-level meeting between Border Guard Bangladesh and Indian Border Security Force began in New Delhi today where continued killings and rights violations in the border, among other issues, would be tabled.
‘We have a set of priorities...The issue of border killing is also among them,’ said BGB director general Major General Aziz Ahmed, who is leading a 22-member Bangladesh delegation, before his departure for New Delhi.
Rights groups said that the border killings by BSF continued despite repeated assurance of stoppage.
The Bangladesh delegation already left Dhaka to sit for the talks with the Indian team. Before the meeting, Indian authorities have arranged sightseeing in Himachal, among others.
The border guard officials said that the 43rd director general-level talks would follow up the decision made in the previous meeting held in Dhaka in May.
According to the border guard headquarters, a decision to carry out joint investigations was made at the 42nd director general-level talks in Dhaka on May 16 after school student Shehab Uddin of Goalpara at Jibannagar in Chuadanga was shot at point-blank range on May 14 when the BSF chief and its delegation were visiting Bangladesh for the six-day talks.
Not a single killing on the India-Bangladesh border has, however, been jointly investigated so far.
At least 22 Bangladeshi civilians were shot dead by BSF since the middle of May while Indian civilians also killed four other Bangladeshis.
According to Bangladesh home ministry, 109 Bangladeshi civilians were killed by BSF in the borders between January 2012 and April 2016.
Ain O Salish Kendra acting executive director Nur Khan Liton said border killings should be stopped by any means and investigation into each of the incidents should be carried out jointly.
Rights organisation Odhikar in a recent report said human rights violations on Bangladeshi citizens continued on the India-Bangladesh borders.
The border meeting would be followed by visits to different historical Indian sites.
A joint record of declaration of the 43rd director general-level talks would be signed on Tuesday.
Bangladesh shares 4,053 kilometres of border with India.
The meeting is scheduled to discuss development works within 150 yards of the border and violation in the construction design of single row fencing.
In BGB-BSF top-level meeting in Dhaka on December 29, 2014, the then BSF director general Devendra Kumar Pathak once again ‘promised’ that the border guards of the two neighbours jointly would try to put an end to the border killing.
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