8 BSF staff suspended for torturing local

Eight Border Security Force (BSF) personnel posted in Murshidabad were suspended following the release of a video showing them tying up a man and assaulting him.

The video, whose source is unidentified, has been aired in different news channels and showed BSF soldiers beating up a man who was naked and hands tied at the back.

“A high level probe headed by a superior officer of the rank of a commandant has also been ordered,” BSF spokesperson Viswanath Parasar said.

The suspended BSF personnel were identified as constables Virender Tiwari, VS Victor, Dhananjay Kumar, Anand Singh, Amar Jyoti, Sanjeev Kumar, Suresh Chand and Sunil Kumar. The incident sparked off allegations from various quarters that soldiers not only take money from local villagers in the name of security, but also indulge in various illegal activities. 

“When asked about the incident, IG, BSF (South Bengal) R K Panoth said, “I am yet to get the details of the case but we are seriously looking into the matter and if anybody is found guilty then strong action will be taken against him”.

However local people claim that the video footage had been shot by troopers themselves to distribute amongst the residents and create fear.

Asked about this allegation, Panoth said, “It is very unlikely that BSF jawans could have taken the photograph because Jawans on duty are not supposed to carry mobile phone with them”.

Murshidabad-based NGO Masoom said such incidents were common in the border villages. “Such incidents are frequent. If you see the footage, it is very clear that the video has been purportedly shot to instil fear among the villagers,” Masoom’s secretary Kirity Roy said.

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