SHILLONG: The vicious cycle of cross-border cattle smuggling along the India-Bangladesh border is again forming up after the COVID-19 lockdown in Meghalaya. The issue has snowballed into a major challenge for the BSF.
To smuggle the cattle to Bangladesh amid the "unabated rain" and darkness, the cattle smugglers often attack the troops with sharp-edged weapons, bamboo sticks and also by pelting stones. However, the BSF troops bring the situation under control, taking utmost precaution and restraint.
Since the lockdown kicked in, there has been a decline in cattle smuggling in the State due to the restrictions on movement of people and vehicle. But now with ease in lockdown, nefarious designs of Indian and Bangladesh cattle smugglers have again started taking shapes, stated a release.
On August 31, BSF personnel seized 53 cattle worth Rs 4.3 lakhs at two places of the East Khasi Hills and the West Jaintia Hills districts. On June 27 also, BSF troops deployed along the International Border in East Khasi Hills district seized 17 cattle worth more than 3 Lakhs on June 27, and 26 cattle worth more than Rs 2 lakhs that very day. The seized cattle were handed over to Police.
DIG, PRO Ftr BSF Meghalaya, UK Nayal stressed that cooperation with the civil authorities is a must for better check in cattle smuggling across the State. He added that time and again, the BSF has been informing the civil authorities about the stock of cattle heads kept in the bordering areas for smuggling into Bangladesh, the release added.
There are reports that the cattle smuggling syndicate is again gearing up and trying to revive the Siliguri-Khanapara-Nongpoh route to supply smuggled cattle not only in East Khasi Hills but also in the Garo Hills district of Meghalaya. He further stated that, before cattle smuggling takes an alarming shape again, Police and other agencies should also step forward, co-ordinate and launch special operations with BSF to stop the menace of cattle smuggling, the release added.
Also Watch: Power Lines or Death Traps?