SHILLONG: Border Security Force troops apprehended five cattle smugglers (four Bangladeshi nationals and one Indian) at Muktapur, West Jaintia Hills, Meghalaya, and recoverd beef (330 kg) worth Rs 90,000 (Bangladesh Taka) from them. The smugglers have been identified as Noor Islam (45), Abdul Kalam (18), Shwel Ahmed (26), Kamal Miya (38), and Samiwell Lyngdoh (49).
The arrested Bangladeshi smugglers told the BSF interrogators that they crossed over to India and met Indian smugglers to strike a deal for a cattle consignment for smuggling. After getting the cattle, they found that all of them were not in a condition to be smuggled through the rough and rugged terrain as they were injured. Hence they slaughtered a few of them and were transporting the meat into Bangladesh in a Tata Spacio, Smugglers have adopted this new practice of smuggling slaughtered cattle following frequent seizures.
Cow smuggling to Bangladesh has been going on for decades along the border in Meghalaya with illegal cattle traders from Bangladesh, Assam and Meghalaya making huge profits.
Meghalaya shares a 443 km border with Bangladesh, part of which is porous, hilly and unfenced and prone to frequent infiltration.
Indian Customs officials valued the smuggling of cows from India to Bangladesh at approximately over Rs 1,000 crore annually.
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