By Prashant Acharya
Residents of villages along the India-Bangladesh border are being confronted by the recurring issue of cattle rustling. Two cows and four bulls were stolen early Tuesday morning between 1:30am and 2am from Fakirganj and Goal Gach villages under the Phansidewa police station.
Mohammad Karim of Goal Gach said he heard some people shouting outside and when he stepped outside, he found two of his cows missing from the cowshed. Two cows and two bulls were also reported stolen
from Fakirganj village. He said the villagers formed a group of villages and approached the BSF 66 battalion border outpost for help, but they met with a dead end. The group went to the BOP on Wednesday morning too, but the BSF personnel on duty asked the villagers to contact the Bangladesh Rifles.
Karim and another villager, Mohammad Sabirul, were allotted passes to enter 5km inside the Bangladesh border. The duo reportedly found the stolen cattle tied at a cowshed in Baxidangi. Sabirul said a BDR commandant asked the two to come again with official permission from the BSF to claim the cattle, but said the latter is not supporting them.
BSF DSP (border) Dilip Talukdar confirmed about the incidence of cattle theft along border villages. According to BSF officials, India has almost completed erecting a 4,000km-long, 3m high, multi-layered barbed wire fencing along the entire border with Bangladesh to keep illegal immigration and smuggling at bay. Of the total length, 1,066km falls in the north Bengal region.