BSF to probe killing of 3 Tripura tribals by its men

Agartala, (IANS): The Border Security Force (BSF) has ordered a court of inquiry into the killing of three tribals in firing by its troopers in Tripura last week, officials said here on Monday.

“A court of inquiry has been ordered by the BSF into the incident. Senior BSF officials outside the Udaipur (southern Tripura) sector would conduct the court of inquiry,” BSF Deputy Inspector General Hardeep Singh said.

“Appropriate administrative actions have been initiated to prevent recurrence of such incident in future,” he said.

Three tribals, including a woman, were killed and two others were injured in BSF firing in southern Tripura’s Chittabari village along the India-Bangladesh border on March 17.

The probe order came after Kolkata-based BSF Additional Director General (Eastern Command) R.P. Singh visited the tension-ridden border areas and held a series of meetings with top Tripura government officials on Sunday and Monday.

“The BSF’s Additional DG along with other senior officials on Monday held meetings with Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar and discussed the incident. Sarkar asked the BSF officials to take apt steps against the accused BSF personnel,” a Tripura Home Department official said.

Tripura Chief Secretary Sanjeev Ranjan and Director General of Tripura Police K. Nagaraj were also present in the meeting.

Earlier, the BSF said in a statement that its troopers were trying to stop smuggling of cattle to Bangladesh on Friday when they were attacked by villagers with sharp weapons and batons. The troopers then opened fire, killing three persons.

However, locals told the police that three BSF men tried to molest a young tribal woman and when the villagers resisted, they opened fire.

Tripura shares a 856-km border with Bangladesh, a portion of which is still unfenced.

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