On February 6, 2014, a cow smuggler named Aminur Rahman (age 30) was killed by an irate mob, tired of escalating cow smuggling in the area and also the lackluster response of local administration to inhibit this ominous trade. The incident took place at the village of Hemkumari under the police station of Kuchilbari in Mekhligunj within the district of Cooch Behar adjacent to the international India-Bangladesh border. According to local police, slain Aminur Rahman is originally from Bangladesh and lived in Patgram there. The dead body, following post-mortem examination, was handed over to the Bangladeshi police through a flag meeting with Border Guard of Bangladesh (BGB) at Charbandha. Meanwhile, 4 persons, known to be involved in stealing a cow in the village of Nagar Bhagni of Dinhata, were handed over to local police. Police seized the vehicle used to smuggle cow as well.
On the word of Anup Jaiswal, Superintendent of Police in Cooch Behar, a team comprising Bangladeshis entered the Indian mainland to appropriate and then smuggle cows into Bangladesh. However, local villagers caught one of them red-handed and the mob fury led to his death. The slain youth, later on, was identified as Aminur Rahman and a citizen of Bangladesh and hence, his body was transferred to the Border Guard of Bangladesh (BGB) after complying with official procedures.
But there are other facts as well and this was revealed after talking to villagers. In accordance with villagers, smuggling of cows has become a regular affair in the realm of bordering districts and whether it is North Bengal or South Bengal, the picture remains same and without doubt, the situation, thanks to administrative indifference or compulsions, is worsening steadily. And Mekhligunj in the district of Cooch Behar happens to be one of the worst affected areas.
In accordance with villagers, a team of seven Bangladeshi cow smugglers entered the Indian soil through Kuchilbari border in the dead of night on February 6 and at 2 am they tried to barge in the village of Hemkumari. When locals got cautious and started to pour out of their residences in large numbers, all criminals tried to run away. When villagers chased the team, six of them could manage to cross the border and enter Bangladesh. One of them, as reported already, was caught red-handed and was thrashed in public leading to his death. However, villagers remained tight-lipped of the death. For that reason, even if local police of Kuchilbari patrolled the entire area, they couldn’t find out the slain body. It was found in the morning on Thursday.
On February 7, locals in the village of Bhagni within Dinhata caught four people red-handed for stealing cows and following a good thrashing in public, two cows were recovered. Later, they were handed over to the local police. But residents in the village of Hemkumari are found to be apprehensive of a lethal attack before long and according to them, cow smugglers, including six who had fled to Bangladesh, would come with lethal weapons for a reprisal. When asked of reasons behind such an apprehension, these types of attacks, after any failed attempt, was termed as common in the area. But at this time, instead of depending on police and BSF, villagers are preparing themselves to stave off any tragedy.