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Cattle Smuggling Along The Indo-Bangladesh Border Has Declined Drastically

Sugandh Bhatnagar
Sugandh Bhatnagar
Cattle Smuggling

Livestock seizures along the eastern borders have declined dramatically in recent years, indicating that cattle smuggling from India to Bangladesh has been effectively combated. According to the most recent data available from the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), livestock seizures by the Border Security Force (BSF) on the Bangladesh border were just 20,415 in November 2021, down from 1,53,602 in 2015. 

Data from the previous seven years demonstrates that 2018 was a watershed year, with livestock seizures dropping nearly 50% to 63,716 from 1,19,299 in 2017. In the last two years, the numbers have plummeted dramatically: 46,809 in 2019 and 20,415 in 2021. 

How Has The Cattle Smuggling reduced? 

Since taking power in May 2014, the BJP-led government has placed a special emphasis on cow preservation. 

Other explanations for the dramatic decline in livestock seizures, according to BSF sources, are unknown. "Previously, after we captured livestock, they were turned over to customs officials, who auctioned them off."

The cattle that were auctioned were frequently purchased by the same smugglers who had smuggled them back to the border. "As a result, the number of seizures increased," a senior BSF officer revealed. 

Such auctions were abolished in 2018. "Local cops were supposed to take custody of impounded cattle, but they refused to do so. So, with the support of certain NGOs, the BSF took care of the seized animals before distributing them to cow shelters. The BSF has had to suffer costs, but this has resulted in fewer seizures," the officer added. 

BSF Constable Killed by Cattle Smugglers 

Vivek Tiwari, 30, a policeman of the 59 Battalion, was overpowered and killed by forceful drowning in a canal by cattle traffickers near the Indo-Bangladesh border, according to senior BSF sources. He joined the BSF in May 2017. 

Tiwari, who was born in the Uttar Pradesh town of Azamgarh, had a pregnant wife and one-year-old daughter. 

West Bengal has the longest and most porous foreign borders of all the states. Bangladesh shares a 2216-kilometer international border with the state. It also has a 100-kilometer border with Nepal and a 183-kilometer border with Bhutan. 

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