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BSF in West Bengal 'continuing to target, torture' minorities in border villages

Injury marks
Counterview Desk 

In a letter to the National Human Rights Commission chairman, Kirity Roy, secretary, Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM) and national convenor, Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity ((PACTI), Hooghly, West Bengal, highlighting the cases of “brutal torture” of a Muslim youth by two Border Security Force (BSF) constables, has said that this is not the first case of “arbitrariness of the violence committed on the victims” against a particular section of society on the basis on religion.”
The letter regrets, despite the fact that he was set free finding all the documents in his possession in order, the police registered no FIR against the constables, who were responsible for “gravely injuring” this person.

Text:

I am writing to you regarding a case of brutal torture upon a youth from the Muslim community by two constables of the Border Security Force and one G branch officer, all are on duty, attached with Hakimpur Border Out Post, ‘F’ Company, 112 Battalion.
The victim and his family reside in Daharkanda village, Swarupnagar Block and police station in the district of North 24 Parganas. When the victim was going to Swarupdaha market via Kamarpota, the BSF personnel apprehended him with silver.
They beat him repeatedly with thick cable wire, gravely injuring him on back and leg and bruise mark arose from the injured part of his body. About seven hours the victim was in the custody of the BSF and he was continuously tortured by the BSF.
After that the victim was handed over to the customs department who released the victim after checking his all documents. No case was made against him. He was treated in the Sarapul Rural Hospital. On February 27, 2022 the victim filed a written complaint to the Superintendent of Police, Basirhat Police District but till date, no FIR has been lodged against the perpetrators.
This incident is among a spate of other incidents of torture, physical assault, illegal detention and extrajudicial killings upon marginalized communities, specifically on the Muslim minority community. The arbitrariness of the violence committed on the victims is evidence that the violence is motivated by an intention to discriminate against and target a particular section of society on the basis on religion.
The incident entails a clear violation of Article 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India. The Police have violated the Supreme Court Guidelines in the Lalita Kumari Judgment which makes it mandatory for them to lodge a FIR in cases of cognizable offences.
The incident also violates the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Article 7 and 12(1) International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that India is party to. The incident and subsequent impunity legitimize our long-standing demand for immediate ratification of United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment and Punishment.
Therefore, I seek your urgent intervention in the case by fulfilling the following demands:
  • On duty BSF should be posted at the international border, through IBP, not in villages.
  • The whole matter must be enquired into by one independent inquiring agency.
  • Immediately register the written complaint of the victim to the as First Information Report and proper investigation must be required.
  • Concerned police authorities must be directed to take immediate action for proper investigation of the case.
  • Mr Jayprasad, ‘G’ branch officer and two other BSF constables (Mr Debanan Jha and Mr Rakesh) who are accused of committing the crime in their custody should be immediately brought under trial and prosecuted.
  • The victim should be compensated for the grave injuries inflicted on him.
  • The BSF should be stationed at the zero point and not inside villages.
  • Security and safety of the victim and his family members must be ensured.

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