Skip to main content

Misleading and ill-conceived legal notice and arbitrary restriction by BSF

Kirity Roy, Secretary, Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM), represents to the Chairman, National Human Rights Commission on misleading and ill conceived legal notice and arbitrary restriction by BSF:
Through this complaint, I want to attract your kind attention to another incident of BSF restriction upon the daily activities of the bordering village people. The Border Security Force personnel associated with Mahisgaon Border out Post, ‘E’ Company, 72 Battalion obstructed and restricted the movements of the local populace. Through promulgation of Section 144 of Criminal Procedure Code issued by local administration as prayed by BSF; misconceived BSF termed as ‘Curfew’ and residents of those areas are under panic. People of the area are not allowed to enter the villages by using the IBBR road beside CPWD.
About 5000 people reside in the Paharpur, Mahishagaon, and Keshabpur villages. Out of the total population, 70 percent of the villagers belong to Muslim Other Backward Class and other 30 percent from Hindu Scheduled Caste (Dalit) backgrounds. The main occupation of the villagers is agriculture. The distance between the border fence and the International Border Pillar (IBP) is about 350 meters. There is no ration shop in the village. One primary school (Sarba Siksha Kendra) is located in the village. There is PWD (Keshabpur/Mahishagaon) road in the village.
Paharpur, Mahishagaon and Keshabpur village is a bordering village of the Indo-Bangladesh border situated under the jurisdiction of Choi Nagar Gram Panchyat and Hemtabad Block and Hemtabad Police Station in the district of North Dinajpur. Here most of the people are Muslims and farmers from the minority community. About 2000 bigha of agricultural land is there. Farmers and villagers of Paharpur, Mohisagaon and Keshabpur villages are always terrified of the activities of BSF personnel. They always place illegal and arbitrary restrictions upon the life and livelihood of the villagers.
These whimsical actions and arbitrary restriction imposed by the Border Security Force personnel posted at Paharpur, Mahishagaon and Keshabpur villages is not only challenging their life and livelihood but also violating the Article 21 and Article 19 of the Constitution of India and Article 12 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The plight of the villagers and denial of their proper livelihood practices is against the Articles 7 and 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) as well as the goal number 8 and 16 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. In all these international instruments, the Government of India is a party and has taken pledge to adhere with.
The villagers of the three villages jointly complained to the DM Uttar Dinajpur and BDO, Hemtabad Block, Hemtabad Uttar Dinajpur. They complained of --
1. the BSF has restricted their movements within 8 km of the border area
2. BSF has prohibited the villagers to transport food grains, cattle, petroleum products, or any other products, section 144 was issued by them, so common people like farmers, rickshaw pullers, toto drivers, laborers and workers are facing difficulties to continue their livelihood. It is difficult to bring essential goods and livelihood is hindered.
Following are the names and details of some of the victim villagers, whose movements were restricted by the BSF:–
Other victims who were restricted by BSF:
On 09.09.2022 the people of Paharpur village jointly submitted one letter complaining of the above stated situation to the Block Development Officer, Hemtabad Block and to the District Magistrate, North Dinajpur and prayed for taking proper action. But till date no action has been taken by the concerned district and block administration. The incident is a clear violation of Articles 19 and 21 of the Indian Constitution and Goal No 16 of Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations General Assembly to promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies. The incident is also against the Article 12 of International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). The villagers of Paharpur, Mohisagaon and Keshabpur have rights guaranteed in Article 2 of ICCPR, which were not entertained.
Hence, I request your urgent intervention in this matter with the following demands: -
  • The border security force personnel should be posted at zero point and not inside villages.
  • The whole matter should be inquired by one neutral authority, appointed by the Commission.
  • Adequate measures should be directed to be taken by the authorities concerned to hear and consider the problems of the villagers in a fair, just and reasonable manner and to sort out a reasonable and legitimate solution to their problems.
  • The gates must be opened for 12 hours a day.
  •  The BSF authorities must be directed to protect the interests of the people residing besides border fencing without imposing any unreasonable restrictions on them.
  • Wrong interpretation of legal notice must be removed.
The mass petition submitted by the victim villagers before the District Magistrate, North Dinajpur should properly be acknowledged and adequate steps should be directed to be taken on the said mass petition. CPWD must remove the illegal notice for the convenience of people to reach their farming lands without any difficulty. BSF must be directed to be posted at the actual border instead of the inner side of CPWD road or inside villages.



Crucial to revisit roots, embrace core Hindu principles: love, compassion, harmony

A note on religious leaders'  Satya Dharam Samvad in Haridwar: *** In a groundbreaking gathering, more than 25 religious leaders including Swamis, Acharyas, Pujaris, Gurus, and Sadhvis from all over India convened to discuss the tenets of Hinduism on September 16th, 2023, in Haridwar, to discuss and discern the current trajectory of Hinduism. This brand new initiative, the Satya Dharam Samvad, was inspired to organize its first assembly in response to the December 2021 Dharma Sansad, where hate speech and calls for violence against the Muslim community contravened the essential principles of Hinduism. Religion is being used to incite riots among Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Jains, etc. In the face of such hatred, Swami Raghavendra felt that something meaningful should be done in the present climate. 

Maoist tendency of mechanically adhering to Chinese path ignores Indian conditions

By Harsh Thakor  The C.P.I. (Maoist) formed in 2004 with merger of the C.P.I. (M.L) Peoples War and the Maoist Communist Centre has demonstrated courage in intensity compared to any great revolutionary struggle in the history of the world. It leads the largest armed movement of a Peoples Guerrilla Army in the world today and proved themselves as the true torch bearers of the Indian Communist movement.

Significant step towards empowering and particularly engaging with informal workers

ActionAid note on drive to empower informal sector workers Odisha with the support of District Labour Department: *** The Odisha Unorganised Workers Social Security Board (OUWSSB) facilitated an Unorganized Workers Awareness Camp at the Red Cross Bhawan in Bhubaneswar, Odisha. The event took place in collaboration with the District Labour Department at Khordha, Centre for Child and Women Development and ActionAid Association. This informative event aimed at empowering informal sector workers by disseminating crucial information regarding their eligibility for various social security schemes provided by the Government of Odisha.

Dev Anand ably acted as westernised, urban educated, modern hero, as also anti-hero

By Harsh Thakor  On September 26th we celebrated the birth centenary of legendary actor Dev Anand. Dev Saab carved out a new epoch or made a path breaking contribution in portraying romanticism and action in Bollywood cinema, giving his style or mannerisms a new colour. Arguably no Bollywood star manifested glamour in such a dignified or serene manner or struck the core of an audience’s soul in romantic melodies. Possibly we missed this evergreen star being cast in a Hollywood film. Dev Anand is like an inextinguishable soul of Bollywood. Although not as artistic or intense as Dilip Kumar, Raj Kapoor or Ashok Kumar ,Dev Anand surpassed them all for liveliness or flamboyance, with his performances radiating g energy on the screen, in realms rarely transcended. In his own right, Dev Saab, was a craftsman, like his classical contemporaries, with a characteristic composure. Perhaps never was a Bollywood star so suave, bubbling or charming as Dev Anand, who often looked like an Indian versi

We need to resurrect Neruda, give birth to poets of his kind amidst neofascist rampage

By Harsh Thakor  On 23rd September we commemorate the 50th death anniversary of Pablo Neruda, whose contribution to revolutionary poetry was path breaking. Pablo Neruda’s poetry manifested the spiritual essence of revolutionary poetry and how poetry was a weapon for a revolutionary struggle. The story of his life illustrated the spiritual transformation undergone a human being to transform him into a revolutionary and how environment shapes the lie of revolutionary.

Grassroots NGO enlightens people of Kupwara with intricacies of Right to Information

J&K RTI Foundation and Founder Civil Rights Movement Kupwara note on how RTI Pend is empowering Kupwara with insights on Right to Information Act: *** RTI Pend, the grassroots initiative aimed at democratizing access to information, hosted its 2nd event in Kupwara. On the request of the Civil Rights Movement Kupwara, this event was tailored to enlighten the people of Kupwara with the intricacies of the Right to Information Act, presented in their local language and dialects. The event successfully bridged both offline and online participation, addressing queries on the spot and offering applicants practical solutions.

Abrogation of Art 370: Increasing alienation, relentless repression, simmering conflict

One year after the abrogation by the Central Government of Art. 370 in Kashmir, what is the situation in the Valley. Have the promises of peace, normalcy and development been realised? What is the current status in the Valley? Here is a detailed note by the People’s Union for Civil Liberties , “Jammu & Kashmir: One Year after Abrogation of Art. 370: Increasing Alienation, Relentless Repression, Simmering Conflict”:

Agro-biodiversity through seed identification, conservation, replication, crop selection

By Kuntal Mukherjee, Basant Yadav, Shivnath Yadav* This article is mainly based on a journey of the three of us since 2010 based on field experience, study of different articles, reflective journeys with local community based organisations, villagers and practitioners in Chhattisgarh. The slow growth of Agriculture in India with near stagnation in productivity since mid ‘80s in contrast to the remarkable growth during the green revolution period has come to the front as a great concern. In post WTO era Indian Agriculture has been witnessing structural changes, uncontrolled influx of agriculture goods and commodities from foreign countries due to open market nature. The gradual reduction in subsidies from internal production leads to increasing cost of production of agriculture produces at the farm gate. It causes gradual decrease in internal production as well as productivity and posing threats to small farm and stakeholders. 

Why Govt of India, Sangh Parivar want to stop the use of ‘India’? What's in a name?

By Ram Puniyani  Coincidentally after the opposition parties came together to form INDIA (Indian National Democratic Inclusive Alliance), the ruling BJP is desisting from the use of word India in official communiqués and its parent organizations RSS has issued a fatwa that only word Bharat should be used for our country. While inviting the representative’s participants of G 20, the President issued the invitation in the name of ‘Rashtrapati of Bharat’. Since then BJP is on the track of avoiding the use of the word India in all its pronouncements, saying this word smacks of colonial legacy since this word was given to the country by British colonial rulers. Mr. Hemant Biswa Sarma of BJP said that word India is part of the colonial legacy and should be removed. RSS chief and other functionaries have intensified this message. Speaking at a function at Guwahati Mr. Bhagwat, stated “We must stop using the word India and start using Bharat. At times we use India to make those who speak Eng

Sewer workers not given ESI cards that would ensure health benefits they need the most

A note by the Dalit Adivasi Shakti Adhikar Manch (DASAM), an organization working for the issues of sanitation workers in Delhi NCR, on right to life and dignity which still seems light years away for sewer workers: *** Exploitation of Sewer workers is not just a labour issue, but it is rooted in the caste system and cannot be separated from the historical socio-religious-cultural-economic exploitation of the Dalit community! Stated Mr. Y.S. Gill, Senior Journalist and Documentary Film maker in the press conference organised by Dalit Adivasi Shakti Adhikar Manch (DASAM) in Integrated Social Initiatives (ISI), Lodhi Road, New Delhi on issues of sewer workers in Delhi. The press conference was attended by a number of community members, activists, members of the civil society, students etc.