Slangs, torture, molestation, mischief, vandalism by BSF. Victims are from minority families

To                                                                                                                                27 April 2017

The Chairman

National Human Rights Commission

Manav Adhikar Bhawan

Block-C, G. P. O. Complex, INA

New Delhi-110023

 

Respected Sir,

 

Frightening trend of Border Security Force in the bordering areas of District-Cooch Behar, West Bengal resorting to torture upon innocent villagers became daily affairs. The victimwomen namely Ms. Sahiran Bibi and Ms. Rabeya Bibi (names changed) of village-Chhatnotaphela, Post Office-Shalmara, Police Station- Dinhata, District:- Cooch Behar was mercilessly assaulted by the perpetrator Border Security Force personnel on 03.02.2017. One written complaint has been received at Dinhata Police Station on the incident but the police did not register the complaint as FIR till date. Our attached fact finding report gives details of the case.

 

The above incident again shows the violent nature of the law enforcing agencies in the bordering areas where torture upon the innocent villagers are rampant whether they are involved with any crime or not as the law enforcing agencies including the police enjoy an absolute impunity in the area.

 

The perpetrator BSF personnel not only violated the rights guaranteed in Article 21 of Indian Constitution but also violated  Articles 2, 5, 7 and 8 of the UN Code of Conduct for law Enforcement Officials. They also violated Articles 7 and 17 of ICCPR (International Covenant on Civil and Political rights). 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.

 

Hence we seek your urgent intervention in the following manner amongst others:-

  • The whole incident must be investigated by a neutral agency appointed by the Commission
  • The written complaint received at Dinhata Police Station must be treated as FIR and investigation must be done under the appropriate penal provision against the involved BSF personnel.
  • The accused Border Security Force personnel for entreating torture upon the victims must be booked under the law and punished for their alleged assault upon the victims by initiating an independent inquiry into the matter.
  • The victims must be given adequate compensation, support and protection.

 

Thanking you,

Yours truly,

 

Kirity Roy

Secretary- MASUM

National Convener- PACTI

 

Name of the Victims:- (1) Ms. Sahiran Bibi, (name changed) wife of Mr. Mazibar, aged about-55 years; (2) Ms. Rabeya Bibi, (name changed) daughter of Mr. Majibar Sk, both by faith-Islam, residing at village-Chhatnotaphela, Post Office-Shalmara, Police Station- Dinhata, District:- Cooch Behar, West Bengal, India.

 

Name of the Perpetrators: About 10/15 Border Security Force personnel and out of them one is named as Mr. Fakir Singh. They belonged to Jhaljholi BSF BOP Camp, Battalion-98 under Dinhata Police Station, District-Cooch Behar.

 

Date & time of the incident: On 03.02.2017 at about 8 am

 

Place of the incident:- Inside the residence of Mr. Chobir Sk at village-Chhatnotaphela, Post Office-Shalmara, Police Station- Dinhata, District:- Cooch Behar

 

Fact Finding Details:-

It is revealed during the fact finding that Mr. Chobir Sk resides in Chhatnotaphela with his family members. In his residence the victims also reside with other family members jointly. The residence is located beside Torsa and Kaljani rivers and Indo-Bangladesh border is located about 2 kilometers away. The family members are dependent on cultivation for their livelihood.

 

On the date of the incident i.e. on 03.02.2017 at about 8am Ms. Rabeya Bibi was going to toilet. At that time one BSF jawan from Jhaljholi BSF BOP, Battalion-98 entered into residence and forcibly held her under his arms with intention to outrage her modesty. Ms. Rabeya Bibi shouted for help. Hearing her voice, Ms. Sahiran Bibi, Mr. Chobir Sk and Mr. Kajimuddin rushed to the spot. Then immediately about 10/15 BSF jawans came to the spot and hurled smoke bomb using abusive languages. As a result the whole courtyard filled up with smoke and taking advantage of the situation the BSF jawans started to beat the family members indiscriminately by rifle butts. The BSF jawans also molested Ms. Kedona Bibi (name changed) and Ms. Sahiran Bibi by pulling their dress i.e. saree. As a result of assault Ms. Rabeya Bibi sustained bleeding injuries on her head and left eye. Besides that Ms. Bedona Bibi, Ms. Sahiran Bibi and Mr. Chobir Sk sustained swelling and bleeding injuries on several region on their body. At the time of leaving the place of occurrence the BSF personnel committed mischief by breaking the tin walls of the house of Ms. Sahiran Bibi and Mr. Chobir Sk. for which they sustained loss of Rs.5000/-

 

On 03.02.2017 Ms. Rabeya Bibi, Ms. Sahiran Bibi and Mr. Chobir Sk. received medical treatment from Dinhata Sub-Divisional Hospital. Ms. Rabeya Bibi, Ms. Sahiran Bibi were admitted in the said hospital. They were discharged from the hospital on 05.02.2017. Their medical record recorded that they sustained injuries due to physical assault.

 

On 03.02.2017 Ms. Kedona Bibi submitted a written complaint before the Inspector-in-Charge of Dinhata Police Station stating the entire incident. The written complaint was duly received at the police station but not registered as FIR though the complaint disclosed commission of cognizable offences by the accused BSF personnel. In the written complaint the particulars of the accused BSF personnel were mentioned and it was stated that the complainant can identify the accused BSF personnel by face and one of the accused BSF personnel is known to her by name and his name is Mr. Fakir Singh. The victims and the family members stated that the police from Dinhata Police Station had once came to visit the place of occurrence but till date no further action has been taken against the perpetrator BSF personnel.

Statement on killing of 25 CRPF Jawans

Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM) is shocked by the news of killing of about 25 Jawans at Burkapal area under Police Station Chintabufa of District Sukma; Chattisgarh on 24th April, 2017; yesterday by an ambush carried out by the ‘Maoist’, as alleged.
MASUM strongly agree with the version of Government of India that Maoist are losing ground at Chattisgarh, and the situation of ‘internal armed conflict’ is not prevailing in the country. Contrary to their claims hundreds of reports of deaths during fake encounters, rape, molestation, torture, arsons in Bastar area by the armed forces of the Government are coming and haunting the psyche of civil society. Further in each and every case, the perpetrators are enjoying immunity and never punished. MASUM also observing that the different Government’s schemes, social security measures and regulations like Forest Rights Act, PESA, on health service, on education have not been implemented in that area.
While condemning the killing of CRPF Jawans, MASUM strongly feels that the trouble does not lies on only law and order debacle; rather it is a social, political and economic issue of the marginalized Adivasis of the area, who are in brink of total perish and deprived with any due process to get justice and dignity as enshrined by the Article 21 of our Constitution. MASUM desired that the Government of India and Government of Chhattisgarh will deal this problem politically, economically and socially within a democratic framework.

 

Secretary, MASUM
25 April 2017

 

বিএসএফ জওয়ানদের বিরুদ্ধে সাধারণ মানুষের ওপর অত্যাচারের অভিযোগ কেন উঠবে? প্রশ্ন সুপ্রিম কোর্টের

ভারত-বাংলাদেশ সীমান্তে বিএসএফ জওয়ানদের বিরুদ্ধে সাধারণ মানুষের ওপর অত্যাচারের অভিযোগ কেন উঠবে? সীমান্তে সাধারণ মানুষের সঙ্গে কর্তব্যরত বিএসএফ জওয়ানদের আচরণ নিয়ে এক মামলায় আজ এই মর্মেই প্রশ্ন করল সুপ্রিম কোর্ট। সীমান্তবাহিনীর ওপর অত্যাচারের অভিযোগ ওঠাই নয়, এ ব্যাপারে বিএসএফ আইন অনুযায়ী যে কোর্ট মার্শাল হয়, তা কার্যত লোকদেখানো বলেই আবেদনকারীর দাবি।
‘অপরাধ’ করলেও জওয়ানদের কোনও সাজা হয় না বলেই অভিযোগ। তাই বিএসএফ আইনের নির্দিষ্ট কয়েকটি ধারা বাতিল করে এ ব্যাপারে সাধারণ মানুষের সুবিচার প্রার্থনা করে সুপ্রিম কোর্টের দ্বারস্থ হয়েছে বাংলার মানবাধিকার সুরক্ষা মঞ্চ নামে একটি সংস্থা। তাদের দাবি, ২০০৭ থেকে ২০১১ সালের মধ্যে ভারত বাংলাদেশ সীমান্তে এ ধরনের প্রায় ২০০টি ঘটনা ঘটেছে। বিএসএফের সঙ্গে বচসায় বা মতপার্থক্যে জড়িয়ে অত্যাচারিত হয়েছে অনেকেই।
কিন্তু কেন এই অভিযোগ? আজ আবেদনকারীর আইনজীবী বিজনকুমার ঘোষের কাছে জানতে চান প্রধান বিচারপতি জে এস খেহর, বিচারপতি সঞ্জয় কিষাণ কউল এবং বিচারপতি ডি ওয়াই চন্দ্রচূড়ের বেঞ্চ। আদালতে দাঁড়িয়ে আবেদনকারীর আইনজীবী বলেন, ভারত বাংলাদেশ সীমান্তে কাঁটাতারের বেড়া থেকে ১৫ কিলোমিটার পর্যন্ত বিএসএফের এক্তিয়ারে থাকে। তাই ওই এলাকার মধ্যে কর্তব্যরত কোনও বিএসএফ জওয়ানের বিরুদ্ধে সাধারণ মানুষের ওপর অত্যাচার, মহিলাদের যৌন নির্যাতন, এমনকী খুনের অভিযোগ উঠলেও তার বিচার হয় বিএসএফের কোর্ট মার্শালে।
যেখানে নির্যাতিতের পরিবার বা অভিযোগকারীর উপস্থিতির অধিকার নেই। কোনও (থার্ড পার্টি) সাক্ষীও সেখানে যেতে পারে না। অভিযোগকারীর পক্ষে কোনও আইনজীবীও উপস্থিত হতে পারে না। এটাই নিয়ম। তাই সেখানে সঠিক বিচার হয় না বলেই সুপ্রিম কোর্টে আবেদনকারীর আইনজীবীর দাবি। তবে অত্যাচার যে হয়, তার প্রমাণ তুলে দিতে আবেদনকারীর আইনজীবী বিজনবাবু এদিন জাতীয় মানবাধিকার কমিশনের একটি রিপোর্ট আদালতে তুলে দেন। যেখানে এ ধরনের ঘটনার জন্য ঩বেশ কয়েকজন আর্থিক ক্ষতিপূরণ পেয়েছেন।
একইসঙ্গে তাঁর সওয়াল, এই মামলায় আগে বিএসএফসহ কেন্দ্রীয় সরকারকে সুপ্রিম কোর্ট আগেই নোটিস পাঠিয়েছে। তারপর থেকে সীমান্তে এ ধরনের অত্যাচারের ঘটনার অভিযোগ কমেছে। তাই এ ব্যাপারে বিএসএফ আইনের নির্দিষ্ট কয়েকটি ধারা বাতিল করার দাবি করা হয়। কিছুক্ষণ মামলা শোনার পর প্রধান বিচারপতিও জানিয়ে দেন, আপনাদের আবেদন গ্রহণ করছি। এ ব্যাপারে বিস্তারিত শুনব। বিএসএফের মতো সুরক্ষা বাহিনীর ওপর এমন অভিযোগ উঠবে কেন?

(উপরের লেখাটি বর্তমান সংবাদপত্রের ২১ শে এপ্রিলের সংখ্যা থেকে উদ্ধৃত) 

 

Erstwhile Bangladeshi Enclave dwellers are still persona non grata – No sanitation, no water, no job card. Article 21 of Indian Constitution is grossly violated by District Administration

To                                                                                                                                19 April 2017

The Chairman

National Human Rights Commission

Manav Adhikar Bhawan

Block-C, GPO Complex, INA

New Delhi-110023

 

Respected Sir,

 

I lodge this present complaint bringing to your kind attention of the pathetic condition of about 25 families residing at Uttar Banshjoni area under Dinhata Police Station, District-Cooch Behar, West Bengal. The family members of those families stated before our fact finding team that Uttar Banshjoni was an erstwhile Bangladeshi enclave. After execution of the Land Boundary Agreement between the Government of India and the Government of Bangladesh in the year 2015, the enclave merged into the territory of India. Since then even after lapse of two years, the families are still deprived from enjoyment of equal liberty and opportunities with the rest of the citizens of India. Though some development works are being taken up in other erstwhile Bangladeshi enclaves merged into Indian Territory, but till date no development work initiated in Uttar Banshjoni area. Few persons got voter identity card but their address in the voter card was wrongly recorded as Purba Mashaldanga instead of Uttar Banshjoni.

 

They are deprived of electricity, proper sanitation, drinking water, job card under MGNREGA and none from those families till date got any ration card. Their houses are in dilapidated condition and no road connectivity. The health centre, primary school and Anganwadi Kendra are distantly located from their area of residence.

 

They further stated that till date they are not clear which local admin would hear their problems. They moved to both the Office of the Block Development Officer, Dinhata-II and the Office of the Block Development Officer, Tufanganj, but none of them heard their problems. Finding no other way on 23.02.2017 they submitted a mass complaint before the District Magistrate’s Office, Cooch Behar. The petition was received in the Enclave cell of the District Magistrate Office, Cooch Behar. But till date no action has been taken on the said petition.

 

The present complaint reflects that the both the Union and State government failed to ensure basic services like water, sanitation, adequate housing, adequate health facilities, job opportunities to the erstwhile enclave dwellers of Uttar Banshjoni which is against the commitments made at the time of execution of the Land Boundary Agreement.

 

Hence I seek your urgent intervention in the present complaint with the following demands of justice for the victims:-

 

  • The whole matter should be enquired into by an independent enquiring agency.
  • The concerned authorities must be directed to take up all kinds of developmental activities under in Uttar Banshjoni area.
  • The concerned authorities must be directed to ensure all sorts of social and economical facilities under the Government schemes to the residents of Uttar Banshjoni area.

 

Thanking you,

Yours sincerely

 

(Kirity Roy)
Secretary- MASUM

&
National Convener- PACTI

Physical assault upon one DALIT man by BSF, no charge framed. No action from police

To                                                                                                                                17 April 2017

The Chairman

National Human Rights Commission

Manav Adhikar Bhawan

Block-C, GPO Complex, INA

New Delhi-110023

 

Respected Sir,

 

I lodge this present complaint where the victim a , chedule Caste youth from district-Murshidabad, West Bengal was subjected to physical assault by the perpetrator Border Security Force personnel; the resulted injury was so severe that he is not in a position to perform regular activities with his left arm. He lodged written complaint before the Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad but no action has been taken till date. He was returning his home after illegally smuggled buffalos to Bangladesh by paying bribe to the posted BSF personnel. He was severely injured by the torturous acts of BSF personnel.

 

The incident was in total contravention of Article 21 of Indian Constitution; which guarantee life and liberty to all. The BSF personnel also violated the international obligations stated in article 7 of ICCPR and article 2,3,5,6 and 8 of Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials; Adopted by General Assembly resolution 34/169 of 17 December 1979.

Our attached fact finding gives details of the incident.

Hence I seek your urgent intervention in this present complaint with prayer to consider following demands:-

  • The whole matter should be inquired by one independent investigating agency preferably by the Commission’s own investigating wing.
  • Involvement of BSF personnel in cross border smuggling at Indo- Bangladesh border should be investigated by high level investigating authority
  • The perpetrator BSF personnel should be booked under the law and be punished in accordance with law.
  •  The complaint submitted before the Superintendent of Police, Murshidabad should be treated as FIR against the perpetrator BSF personnel and investigation must be commenced forthwith.
  • The victim and his family should be provided with adequate compensation and protection.

 

Thanking you,

Yours truly

 

Kirity Roy

Secretary, MASUM

&

National Convener, PACTI

 

 

Name and details of the victim: Mr. Ganapati Mondal, son of Mr. Sunil Mondal; aged about 29 years, belongs to Schedule Caste community, a resident of village- Harudanga, post office- Harudanga, under Raninagar police station, District- Murshidabad, West Bengal

 

Secondary Victim: Ms. Tuti Mondal Bibi; aged about 22 years; wife of the victim, Ms. Tina Mondal; aged about 6 years; daughter and Master Raj Mondal; aged about 2 years; son

 

Name and details of the perpetrators: Border Security Force Personnel from Harudanga Border Outpost of BSF Battalion- 83

 

Date and time of the incident:  05.03.2017 at around 2:00 AM

 

Place of Incident: at adjacent to Harudanga Border Outpost of BSF Battalion- 83 under jurisdiction of Raninagar Police Station

 

Case Detail

Mr. Ganapati Mondal lives in penury with his young wife and two minor children. He is landless but not enlisted in BPL category. Due to his impoverished financial stat, most of the time he has to migrate to different states in search of living; while he stays at his native; he used to smuggle out cattle to Bangladesh as mere courier.

 

On 4th March 2016 at around 10:00 pm, he crossed the border with a pair of buffalos. He received the pair of buffalos from one Mr. Enamul; who is a smuggling kingpin of the area. As reported Mr. Enamul paid the unofficially settled bribe to the posted BSF personnel at Harudanga Camp and local police station and continuing the cross border smuggling activity for long. Mr. Ganapati Mondal while crossed the border uses the road in front of Harudanga Camp and nobody made any hindrance.   It was also reported that the posted BSF personnel facilitating cross border smuggling for a long and thousands of cattle crossed through the point against fixed rate of bribe. Ganapati was returning at around 2:00 am on 5th March 2017, after handed over the cattle at the other side of the border. While he reached at the Harudanga Camp; on his way to home; 6 BSF personnel intercepted him and one of them hit his left arm with bamboo stick and the injury is so severe that still he is not in a position to perform his regular activity with his left arm. He received medical attention at private medical services under Dr. NK Roy and Dr. Ramakanta Majumdar. He sent a written complaint to the Superintendent of Police; Murshidabad on 22.03.2017 but till date no action has been taken.

Enclave dwellers are living without dignity, without sanitation. Government of India’s vows to make Clean India is flouted

To

The Chairman

National Human Rights Commission

Manav Adhikar Bhawan, Block-C, GPO Complex, INA,

New Delhi –   110023

 

 

Respected Sir,

 

I wish to bring into your notice a severe violation regarding right to life with dignity as confer by the Article 21 of the Constitution of India. The hundreds of erstwhile enclave dwellers are facing indignity and humiliation while they are being forced to defecate in open. Though, the governments are advertising their intention to provide clean sanitation facility to its entire citizen, and spending millions on this initiative; the erstwhile enclave dwellers are still living under medieval disgrace. Even the women and girls have to cross half of kilometers to attend their nature’s call; they have to attend in open field and within full public glare; which only increasing sexual violence upon women and girls.

 

Defecation is a very personal and private act and inextricably linked with human dignity. At the same time, sanitation facilities have an important public health dimension. In this regard, sanitation is not only about an individual’s right to have access to a toilet or latrine. Inadequate sanitation leads to contamination of the environment, of public spaces, and of water bodies through feces and wastewater.

 

The resolution (64/292 of 28 July 2010) of General Assembly recognized the right to safe and drinking water and sanitation as human right that is essential for the full enjoyment of life and all human rights.

 

Here I am providing details of three erstwhile enclaves; Shibaprasad Mustafi, Dakkhin Mashaldanga and Maddhya Mashaldanga under Cooch Behar district of West Bengal.

 

At Shibaprasad Mustafi, only 17 families out of 67 were extended with governmental assistance to construct latrines and 50 families are excluded. On 28.01.2017, the villagers submitted a memorandum with mass signature to the District Magistrate; Cooch Behar and blamed that the administration only provided the assistance to the families having connection with ruling political party. The dwellers of Dakkhin Mashaldanga made a deputation before the District Magistrate with signatures of family heads of 84 families with their family details; all these 84 families were deprived from the facility. At Maddhya Mashaldanga the situation is same as Shibaprasad Mustafi; where 10 families out of 102 families received the assistance to construct latrines; 92 families deprived from the assistance. The villagers submitted a memorandum before the District Magistrate; Cooch Behar, requested for the assistance and blamed that the administration is marred by partisan attitude and only provided assistance to the families having connection with ruling political dispensation of the state.

 

In this regard I request your good office to direct the relevant authority to take immediate action and extend the governmental assistance to all families of erstwhile enclaves to construct latrines at their dwellings under relevant governmental schemes and for this purpose no discriminatory or partisan attitude from governmental departments should be taking on.

 

Sincerely Yours

 

 

Kirity Roy

Secretary, MASUM

&

National Convener, PACTI

Women human rights defender of Assam is under serious threat from Hindu fundamentalists, police inaction

To                                                                                                                                12 April 2017

The Chairman

National Human Rights Commission

Manav Adhikar Bhawan

Block-C, G. P. O. Complex, INA

New delhi-110023

 

Respected Sir,

I want to draw your kind attention on following incident where a renowned Human Rights Defender got life threats for sharing her views in a social network forum.

Ms. Bondita Acharya is a Human Rights activist from Jorhat, Assam. She is also North-East Coordinator of Human Rights Defenders Alert (HRDA) and member of Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS). She is also a member of Women in Governance-Assam (WinG). It is worthy to mention here that she was a member of an independent fact-finding mission carried out in inter-State border regions of upper Assam to enquire into the impact on the rural people’s lives and livelihoods by the continued military and internal security operations. The fact finding mission was held from 1st April, 2017 to 3rd April, 2017. MASUM was also part of the said fact finding mission.

Basing on her knowledge through newspaper report that on 5th April 2017 that three persons were arrested from Jorhat town of Assam for allegedly having cow meat in their possession and hurting religious sentiments, she posted her views/comment on the said reported incident on her ‘facebook’ (a social networking site) account on 6th April, 2017 without having any intention of or knowledge what so ever to hurt anybody’s sentiments or feelings. (http://www.thecitizen.in/index.php/NewsDetail/index/3/10355/3-Arrested-for-Beef-in-Jorhat-But-Under-What-Law)  From the said date she has been receiving death threats, rape threats, vulgar, sexual, derogatory messages and also threats for acid attack from various individuals on her facebook (a social networking site) account. Reportedly local Bajrang Dal issued a press statement demanding a public apology from her.

Apprehending danger to her life and limb she lodged complaint before the Superintendent of Police, CID Branch, Guwahati on 09.04.2017 attaching the screenshots of the comments made by various persons. Reportedly no action has been taken on her complaint till date.

Ms. Bondita Acharya is a Women’s Human Rights Defender (WHRDs) engaged in promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms and also gender equality.

Mrs. Margaret Sekaggya, in her capacity as Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, October, 2013 said “WHRDs are at the forefront of social movements that advocate for justice and equality. Their struggle is crucial in widening democracy and redefining economic development models, mainly through their full participation in society and political leadership”. (http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Events/WHRD/OnePagerWHRD.pdf)

The resolution adopted by the UN General Assembly on 18th December, 2013 on Promotion of the Declaration on the Rights and Responsibility of Individuals, Groups and Organs of Society to Promote and Protect Universally Recognized Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms: protecting women human rights defenders  inter alia “Calls upon States to ensure that human rights defenders, including women human rights defenders, can perform their important role in the context of peaceful protests, in accordance with national legislation consistent with the Charter of the United Nations and international human rights law, and in this regard to ensure that no one is subject to excessive or indiscriminate use of force, arbitrary arrest or detention, torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, enforced disappearance, abuse of criminal and civil proceedings or threats of such act”

 

The attack and threat upon Ms. Bondita Acharya is not single one. By seeing the attacks on meat business as an attack on minorities, we are seeing a very small part of the picture in the media. These attacks are affecting lakhs of people from Dalit and farmer communities also. The Government of India, Assam and in other states where led by BJP trying to destroy the plurality and tolerance of Indian Constitution.

 

Under the circumstances I urge the Commission to take urgent action in this matter and I hope that the Commission would consider the following demands of justice:-

 

  • The whole matter should be enquired by a neutral investigating agency. In this the Focal Point of the Commission on HRD must take urgent action to secure proper protection of Ms. Bondita Acharya and her team.
  • The complaint of Ms. Bondita Acharya made before the Superintendent of Police, CID Branch, Guwahati should be registered under the law followed by appropriate legal action.
  • The perpetrators are well known BJP supporters / activists, should be booked in proper penal charges and be apprehended without fail.
  • The authorities concerned must be directed to ensure adequate safety and protection of Ms. Bondita Acharya so that she can carry forward her legitimate work in the promotion and protection of human rights.

 

Thanking you,

Yours truly

 

 

Kirity Roy

Secretary, MASUM

&

National Convener, PACTI

 

 

 

 

Muslim youth was abused, assaulted by BSF in broad day light in the village road for not performing duty of BSF only

To                                                                                                                                10 April 2017
The Chairman
National Human Rights Commission
Manav Adhikar Bhawan
Block-C, GPO Complex, INA
New Delhi-110023

Respected Sir,

I lodge this present complaint where the victim Mr. Abdullah Mondal; a Muslim youth from district-24 Parganas (North), West Bengal was subjected to severe physical assault by the perpetrator BSF personnel on 18.03.2017 at about 11.30 am when he was at his farming land and doing agrarian works. He sustained severe injuries due to the assault. He lodged written complaint before the Officer in Charge of Swarupnagar Police Station; though the complaint was registered as Swarupnagar PS Case No. 211/17 dated 18.03.2017 under sections 341/ 323 of Indian Penal Code, but no action regarding investigation has been taken till date.

The incident was in total contravention of Article 21 of Indian Constitution; which guarantee life and liberty to all. The BSF personnel also violated the international obligations stated in Article 7 of ICCPR and article 2,3,5,6 and 8 of Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials; Adopted by General Assembly resolution 34/169 of 17 December 1979.

Our attached fact finding gives details of the incident.

Hence I seek your urgent intervention in this present complaint with prayer to consider following demands:-

·         The whole matter should be inquired by one independent investigating agency preferably by the Commission’s own investigating wing.

·         The perpetrator BSF personnel should be booked under the law and be punished in accordance with law.

·          The victim and his family should be provided with adequate compensation and protection.

Thanking you,

Yours truly

Kirity Roy
Secretary, MASUM
&

National Convener, PACTI

 

Name of the victim – Mr. Abdullah Mondal aged about 22 years, son of Mr. Tachiruddin Mondal lives in village- Gobra, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas.

Name of Secondary Victim – Mr. Tachiruddin Mondal (Victim’s Father) aged about 55 years.

Date and time of the incident – On 18th March 2017 at around 11.30 am.

Place of the incident – At India Bangladesh Border Road (IBBR) near to gate number 17 and 18 under Gobra Border Outpost of 76 BSF Battalion.

Details of the perpetrator – One Border Security Force personal; Mr. Jishan Ghosh of Gobra Border Outpost under BSF Battalion 76.

Name of the eyewitnesses

1. Mr. Murad Fakir, son of Mr. Ifajtullah resides at village- Gobra, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas

2. Mr. Majed Biswas , son of Mr. Madar Biswas resides at village- Gobra, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas

3. Mr. Aynal Sardar, son of Mr. Alam Sardar resides at village- Gobindapur, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas

Case Details

Mr. Abdullah Mondal belongs to Muslim community. He is aged about 22 years. He helps his father in farming. He lives with his parents. On 18th March 2017 at around 11.30 AM, victim was working on their agrarian field as victim’s father was not physically well and he is taking care of the agrarian activities of their family.

On the mentioned date and time one Border Security Force personal; Mr. Jishan Ghosh of Gobra Border Outpost of 76 BSF Battalion called him from Indo- Bangladesh Border Road; which is around 200-300 meters from his agrarian field. Abdullah responded and went in front of the BSF personal. While he reached, the perpetrator Border Security Force personal started abused him verbally and accused him that Abdullah not restricted a man to cross the border while he was in his agrarian field; Abdullah tried to convince the BSF personal that he has not observed any one to cross through his land. The BSF personal got furious over the reply and he started indiscriminate physical aggression over Abdullah, he was kicked and slapped several times at his whole body by the BSF personal. Due to the severe bashing; Abdullah fell in to the ground. Then the BSF personal kicked on victim’s face and Abdullah received punctured injury just beneath his left eye through the boot spikes of the BSF personal. Victim received also several injuries on his whole body.

Mr. Murad Fakir, son of Mr. Ifajtullah of village- Gobra, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas, Mr. Majed Biswas, son of Mr. Madar Biswas of village- Gobra, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas, Mr. Aynal Sardar, son of Mr. Alam Sardar of  village- Gobindapur, Post Office- Taranipur, Police Station – Swarupnagar, District – North 24 Parganas, rushed to the spot, witnessed the incident and enquired about the reason for inhumane torture upon Abdullah. The BSF personal bluntly replied that few Bangladeshi persons ran away from the area but victim did not stop them. The villagers questioned how he can observe the same while he was engaged in agrarian work and protested severe physical aggression over the innocent youth; the BSF personal left the spot.

Abdullah was brought to Sarapul Rural Hospital for treatment. On next day victim lodged one written complaint to Officer in Charge of Swarupnagar Police Station which was registered as Swarupnagar PS Case No. 211/17 dated 18.03.2017 under sections 341/ 323 of Indian Penal Code. Till date no inquiry/investigation was made by police at the village, witnesses were not examined and no arrest was made.

Bangladeshi women, minors, kid – are now in Indian prison, violating the procedure settled by Govenrnent of India (Home) Department

To                                                                                                                                6 April 2017
The Chairman,
National Human Rights Commission,
Manav Adhikar Bhawan,
Block-C, GPO Complex, INA,
New Delhi- 110023

Respected Sir,
I lodge this present complaint seeking your intervention where the following women being Bangladeshi nationals were arrested by the police of Swarupnagar Police Station, District-North 24 Parganas, West Bengal on 20.01.2017. Their names are as follows:-

1.    Ms. Mili Akhtar, aged about-18 years, daughter of Miraj Joardar of Village & Post Office – Khulna, Police Station- Kulibagan, District – Khulna, Bangladesh.

2.    Ms. Jharna Akhtar, aged about-24 years, daughter of Sultan Shaikh, of village – Rambhadra, Police Station – Najirpur, District – Pirojpur, Bangladesh.

3.    Ms. Basanti Sikdar, aged about-60 years, wife of-Late Asit Sikdar, Village-Batajhore, Police Station-Magura, District- Magura, Bangladesh.

4.    Ms. Sufia Begum, aged about-32 years, wife of Faruk Khan of Village-Mannik Jhore, Police Office-Amtali, Police Station-Moralganj, District – Bagerhat, Bangladesh.

5.    Ms. Shiuli, aged about-18 years, daughter of Ibrahim Howladar, Village-Khawalia, Police Station- Moralganj, District-Bagerhat, Bangladesh.

6.    Ms. Ruma, aged about-19 years, daughter of Ibrahim Howladar of Village-Khawalia, Police Station-Moralganj, District – Bagerhat, Bangladesh

7.    Ms. Fatema Khatun, aged about-60 years, wife of-Abdul Kader Howladar, Village-Khawalia, Police Station-Moralganj, District – Bagerhat, Bangladesh.

8.    Ms. Shilpi Begam, aged about-19 years, wife of Rubel Shaikh of Village-Banargathi, Police Station-Banargathi, District – Khulna, Bangladesh along with one lap baby namely Rumana Khatun (13 months).

The police of Swarupnagar Police Station registered a criminal case vide Swarupnagar Police Station Case no.51/2017 dated 20.01.2017 under section 14 of Foreigners Act. They were produced in the court of Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Basirhat on the next day and they are currently detained in a correctional home as Under-trial prisoner.

There was no indication that no formal enquiry was carried out by the police or BSF to ascertain whether the aforesaid Bangladeshi woman was the victim of human trafficking or not. Without ascertaining the same, they were brought under prosecution under the Foreigners Act.

It is strongly believed that some of the victims of trafficking were under age of below 18. They were minors. Just to avoid the harassment of duty, to send them before JJB, police of Swarupnagar simply put the ages as 18 or 19. Our FF teams view that in cases of –

I.        Ms. Mili Akhtar, aged about-18 years, daughter of Miraj Joardar of Village & Post Office – Khulna, Police Station- Kulibagan, District – Khulna, Bangladesh

II.        Ms. Shiuli, aged about-18 years, daughter of Ibrahim Howladar, Village-Khawalia, Police Station- Moralganj, District-Bagerhat, Bangladesh

III.        Ms. Ruma, aged about-19 years, daughter of Ibrahim Howladar of Village-Khawalia, Police Station-Moralganj, District – Bagerhat, Bangladesh

IV.        Ms. Shilpi Begam, aged about-19 years, wife of Rubel Shaikh of Village-Banargathi, Police Station-Banargathi, District – Khulna, Bangladesh along with one lap baby namely Rumana Khatun (13 months)

Where 5 (five) female persons were victims of manufacturing of criminal case by the police of Swarupdaha.

The national advisory was issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (Foreigners Division), Government of India on 1st May, 2012 inter alia states that “(IV) it is seen that in general, the foreign victims of human trafficking are found without valid passport or visa. If, after investigation, the woman or child is found to be a victim, she should not be prosecuted under the Foreigners Act. If the investigation reveals that she did not come to India or did not indulge in crime out of her own free will, the State Government / UT Administration may not file a charge sheet against the victim. If the charge sheet has already been filed under the Foreigners Act and other relevant laws of the land, steps may be taken to withdraw the case from prosecution so far as the victim is concerned. Immediate action may be taken to furnish the details of such victims to the Ministry of External Affairs (Consular Division), Patiala House, New Delhi so as to ensure that the person concerned is repatriated to the country of her origin through diplomatic channels” and (v) During the interim period, pending repatriation, the victim may be taken care of in an appropriate children’s home, or “Ujjawala” home or appropriate shelter home either of the State Government concerned or of any NGO aided by the Government of India / State Government.”

The present incident shows that the police did not conducted any enquiry in view of the above stated national advisory. Therefore, I seek your urgent in the above stated matter and for consideration of the following demands:-

·         The whole matter should be enquiry into by a neutral investigating authority.

·         During pendency of the enquiry the victim Bangladeshi women and the woman with her lap child should be shifted to a shelter home.

·         The authorities must be directed to conduct an enquiry in view of the national advisory while dealing with foreign national.

·         The victims women must be repatriated to their home country if found to be the victims of trafficking by an enquiry in compliance of the national advisory.

·         Any other action as the Commission may deem fit and proper.

Thanking you
Yours truly
 

Kirity Roy
Secretary, MASUM
&
National Convener, PACTI

One young tribal woman tea garden worker died due to indifferent attitude of government health system

To
The Chairman
National Human Rights Commission
Manav Adhikar Bhawan,
Block-C, GPO Complex, INA,
New Delhi – 110023
Respected Sir

Here I am writing to draw your attention to the deplorable situation at various tea gardens, and miseries and destitution of tea workers. We repeatedly brought the issues of starvation and lack of medical facility at different tea gardens in North Bengal to the attention of authorities concerned including your Commission by submitting complaints and fact finding reports, but there is of no appropriate response from any end. There have been a large number of workers and their family members suffering from malnutrition related diseases i.e. anemia, tuberculosis, blood dysentery, fever, etc, resulting from a combination of starvation and general debility.

In this recent case, I want to reveal the inhumane and unresponsive attitude of government medical deliverance system mounting the grief and agony of the tea garden workers. On 13th March 2017 evening, Bihani Lohar; wife of Mr. Bimal Lohar, Schedule Tribe, aged about 26
years of village- Raipur (Lohar Line); post office- Rongdhamali under Jalpaiguri police station consumed poison. She was brought to adjacent health centre but as her condition deteriorated she was rushed for Jalpaiguri Sadar Hospital through a hired car. Mr. Bimal Lohar hired
the car. On their way they had to stop for refuel the hired car; which caused delay to start her treatment. At last she got admitted at Emergency Ward of Jalpaiguri Sadar Hospital. The attending doctor prescribed few medicines and asked Mr. Bimal Lohat to buy those from
the adjacent fair price medical shop. Financial condition of Mr. Lohar was so impecunious at that time that he had only Rs. 100; which he borrowed from the driver of the hired car which brought his wife to the Jalpaiguri Sadar Hospital. Mr. Lohar went to the fair price medical shop with only Rs. 100; which he had but the price of the required medicines was not within Rs. 100; it necessitate few more bucks and the shopkeeper refused to give him the medicines. Mr. Lohar
pleaded for the medicines as his wife was at death bed at that time. The shopkeeper then enquired about his belongings at that time and Mr. Lohar had to mortgage a mobile phone; which he borrowed from one of his neighbor and returned to the emergency ward with medicines but in the meantime wife of Mr. Bimal Lohar breathed her last. Here It should be mentioned that medical care at government facilities are suppose to be free. Mr. Bimal Lohar considered that his wife died due to indifferent and inhumane attitude of the fair price medicine shop and he made written complaints on 23/03/2017 to the Chief Medical Officer (Health); Jalpaiguri and Block Development Officer of Jalpaiguri Sadar and demanded for justice. The post mortem examination was done over the body of Bihani Lohar on 14.03.2017 at Jalpaiguri Sadar Hospital; Dr. A.K Chakroborty done the PME. An Unnatural Death Case vide 113/17
of Jalpaiguri Kotwali PS has been initiated.

The incident only evidently proves the severely pitiable health delivery system in West Bengal and overall destitution of tea garden worker in northern parts of West Bengal.

In this circumstance I demand for:-

·         The state government should provide urgent relief to the tea workers in terms of food supply and medical treatment to prevent further deaths and deterioration of health conditions of sick workers and their dependents.

  •        Without further delay, Rastriya Swasthya Bima Yojana be implemented to all Tea Garden workers in Jalpaigur, Darjeeling and Alipurduar districts

    ·         The kin of the deceased person; Bihani Lohar should be provided with adequate reparation

    ·         The errant shopkeeper and involved staffs of Jalpaiguri  Sadar hospital must be adequately punished

    ·         The state government should ensure that all outstanding dues of the labourers are paid immediately. It should ensure that not a single worker is retrenched and they get all their unpaid provident fund and gratuity.

    ·         Extend all medical facilities including improve infrastructure of primary health center, appoint qualified resident doctor, ensure supply of life saving medicine and provide ambulance
    service for serious patients.

    ·         Bring tea garden workers under National Food Security Act (NFSA) and provide standard quality food grain.

    ·         Bring casual workers, who are working at the garden for years, under food security act and give them access to medical facilities and revised their wages.

    ·         Provide facilities according to the Tea Plantation Act 1951, including basic health care, ensure food security, housing and education facilities, electricity, drinking water etc.

    ·         Most of the tea workers in the tea garden are Adivasis or Dalits; recognize all Adivasis workers of said tea garden as Scheduled Tribes and provide all statutory benefits.

    ·         Declare all tea garden workers as living under Below Poverty Line, until they are included in Minimum Wages Act, and grant them all the facilities and benefits due to those classified under BPL sections.

    Sincerely Yours

    (Kirity Roy)
    Secretary
    Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha
    (MASUM)
    &
    National Convenor (PACTI)
    Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity