The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Body bags on Bangla route

Behrampore, Aug. 19: The Bangladesh Rifles will be handed the bodies of the two men gunned down by the Border Security Force on the surging Padma on Sunday night.

Like some of the residents of Jalangi, about 250 km from Calcutta, the BDR has claimed that one more man was killed when the BSF patrol on the river border fired at a boat allegedly smuggling cattle to Bangladesh.

BSF officials said the BDR has identified the third man as Mintu Mondol, 25, who died of bullet wounds at a Bangladesh hospital yesterday. Villagers here had suspected that he had drowned in the river after being injured. Mondol was a resident of Daulatpur in Bangladesh’s Kusthia district.

“BDR officials got in touch with me and requested us to hand over the bodies of Billal Mondol and Saidul Maithya, who they agreed were both Bangladeshi nationals,” BSF commandant R.K. Hajela said today.

He added that the two bodies had been handed over to the Jalangi police station on Sunday night. “Once the police complete all formalities and hand the bodies back to us, we will immediately give them to the BDR at a flag meeting. A flag meeting between the two sides is likely to be held tomorrow,” Hajela said.

Murshidabad superintendent of police Gyanwanth Singh said the post-mortem of the bodies and other paper work had been completed and the bodies would be handed over as soon as the BSF asked for them.

“The police have no role in handing over the bodies to the Bangladeshi authorities. That is the responsibility of the BSF,” Singh said.

The two men who were shot dead were said to be notorious criminals and smugglers and had a record of cross-border activities. On Sunday night, they were on their way to Bangladesh when they were intercepted by three BSF jawans on a boat.

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