Boarder Security Force (BSF), guarding the country’s 3500 Km Boarders with Bangladesh has become a nightmare for some living in boarder areas. After an incident of molestation of a school girl a few days back, the BSF is again in news, this time for indiscriminate firing severely injuring an elderly couple while chasing cattle smugglers from across the Bangladesh Boarder.
In the gory incident, the severely injured Gurupada Karmakar, 72 and his wife Saraswati, 65, were shifted, in a BSF ambulance, to NRS Hospital in Calcutta, 130KM away from the place of incident, Banpur village in Nadia district of West Bengal.
Hearing gunshots, the couple got up from sleep at around 4.30 AM on 10th July’08 and ventured out to see what happened. Gurupada, with cataract in both eyes, was hit by a bullet on the back near kidney, when he stepped into the courtyard. Wife Saraswati too was hit on the collarbone as she followed her husband.
Villagers rushed to the Karmakars after Palas, 25, the son of the couple raised an alarm seeing his parents slumping to the ground bleeding profusely. The injured were first taken to Krishnaganj Block Hospital where doctors expressed their inability to perform surgery and advised to shift the patients to Krishnanagar District Hospital.
In Krishnanagar too, the doctors were not ready to take risk of the ‘tough’ surgery to remove bullets. As per Biswajit Halder a local Panchayat member, who accompanied the patients, the Senior Surgeon Dr. Sudeb Biswas at the Hospital said, “ The couple are in serious condition and if we perform surgery here, they might die. We cannot not take such a risk, you better take them to NRS Hospital in Calcutta.”
As words spread of about the bullet injuries, angry villagers marched to the local BSF outpost. Sensing trouble Krishnaganj Police rushed to the post and pacified the crowed. At the instance of local police the couple were shifted to Calcutta in the evening by a BSF ambulance.
District Magistrate Onkar Singh Meena called up Senior BSF officials in Nadia and asked them to punish the guilty. He said, “ I have asked them to take necessary steps to prevent such recurrence. The way the old couple were injured is totally unacceptable to us.”