| Smuggled Chinese good being sold at a kiosk in Raxaul on Wednesday. Picture by Jai Prakash |
Patna, Dec. 22: CNG is the popular name of compressed natural gas used in metro cities. But it has a different meaning in some pockets of the state sharing borders with Nepal. It stands for Chinese goods, Nepalese women and gangsters.
Smuggling of Chinese goods along the 725-km-long India-Nepal border is common for the past several years. These days, trafficking of girls has also become rampant. In fact Chinese goods, Nepalese women and gangsters have established an absolute control on the porous India-Nepal border in Bihar.
“You ask people living in the districts bordering Nepal the meaning of CNG, and their prompt reply will be ‘Chinese goods, Nepalese women and gangsters’,” said an official of the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) deployed to guard the international border.
He said a number of villagers in Araria and Kishanganj districts thrived on smuggling.
“Even people below the poverty line move around with expensive mobile phones in Jogbani, a bordering town of Araria district,” said a senior officer of the 24th battalion of the SSB.
He said the firing by the SSB jawans near a border post under Kursakanta police station on Monday was fallout of trans-border activities.
The commandant of the 24th battalion A.K. Singh said: “Most of the villagers there are smugglers. They were unhappy with the presence of our force there. So they created a chaos to defame our personnel.”
Assistant commandant of the 24th battalion of the SSB Okendra Singh said: “Our international inquiry has revealed something different.”
He said an SSB team had gone to the village on Sunday in search of two alleged smugglers Mohammad Naushad and Haziuddin. But its members returned to the camp by 5pm as the two smugglers were not found in the village.
“Our men had virtually put a complete ban on illegal activities and forced the residents to look after an alternative source of income. This led to tussle between our personnel and the local residents,” he said, adding that a detailed report has been sent to the SSB’s frontier headquarters in Patna.
Sources said Chinese goods had flooded the markets in bordering districts in Bihar and had virtually overshadowed the Indian commodities. Shops at Jogbani, Forbesganj, Purnea, Raxaul, Sitmahri, Bairgania, Bagaha and Bettiah openly sell Chinese goods. It seems the Indian people have reposed their faith in them.
Nepalese women take Chinese goods to various markets, the local residents said. These women are the best carrier of such goods, said a police officer. He said most of the cases of women trafficking in Bihar-Nepal border were related to smuggling of Chinese goods and not flesh trade. “As long as this trade continues, trafficking will continue,” he added.
Intelligence reports said banned articles like heroin, charas, RDX and other lethal weapons are smuggled into the Indian territory through these woman carriers.
The gangsters, who have made their hideouts in the villages located on either side of the border are operating the smuggling rackets to fund their gangs active in different areas along the border. If the police sources are to be believed, most of the gangsters, who commit crime in Bihar and at times in other big cities of India, take shelter in Nepal's villages around Viratnagar.