BSF, customs conflict affects work on international border

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Barasat, Sep 18 (UNI) A conflict between the customs officials and BSF guarding the Ghojadanga Corridor with Bangladesh near Basirhat in North 24 Parganas district led to suspension of emigration and customs checking for two hours yesterday.

Visitors also could not cross the international border because of the fracas which arose over their respective duties.

The customs officials at Ghojadanga locked their office for a couple of hours expressing resentment against the alleged BSF high-handedness at the border.

Customs Superintendent Sushanta Bhattacharya talking to reporters described as ''ridiculous'' a second checking by the BSF on the corridor soon after emigration and customs checking of visitors with valid passports.

''The visitors are virtually harassed by the BSF men for such double checking,'' he said.

However, normal work was restored on the international border following a conference between Mr Bhattacharya and the Commandant of the 191 Bn BSF to resolve the impasse through coordination of both agencies.

A section of the forwarding and clearing agents at Ghojadanga were against the BSF checking of their trucks after clearance by the customs here.

The BSF men argued that it was their duty to maintain constant vigil and checking of trucks crossing the international border when smuggling and movement of ultras through the thoroughfare had reportedly intensified.

UNI

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