No-one except Bangladeshis to be allowed to enter from India: Minister

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Dhaka, December 03: Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan on Tuesday said no-one except Bangladesh’s citizens will be allowed to enter the country from India.“We’ll consider if it’s confirmed that they’re Bangladeshi citizens,” he said while replying to a question from journalists at his office at the Secretariat.

The minister said there is no reason to be panicked over the news that people are being pushed into Bangladesh from India.

“We aren’t sure whether those trying to come are Bangladeshis. Although they’re trying to enter, members of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) didn’t let them enter,” Asaduzzaman said adding that the intruders are only a few hundred in number.

He explained that they had tried to push 20-50 people at a time into Bangladesh earlier.

“We won’t allow anyone to enter Bangladesh without being sure. It’s up to us how we receive them if they’re confirmed as Bangladesh’s citizens,” the minister added.

He explained that when visas of Bangladeshis who go to India at different times expire, the Indian authorities send them back. “If any complication arises after the visa of any Bangladeshi expires and there’s any delay in their return, we’ll obviously receive our citizens,” he said.

Mentioning that such push-in is not a provocative act by India, Asaduzzaman said had the number was hundreds or thousands, it would have been a matter of discussion. “Still, the number of people is really low. However, India hasn’t sent any letter in this regard officially. We’re ready to receive the people who’re trying to come to Bangladesh if they’re Bangladeshi citizens. Or else, we won’t receive them.”

Asked whether India is forcefully pushing people into Bangladesh, he said India has not informed them anything officially. “Then why will we say India is forcefully pushing people into our country?” he said.

About the IS cap donned by a death-row convict in the Holey Artisan café attack case on the verdict day, the minister said it is under investigation.

Replying to a query, he said the wearing of the IS cap is nothing alarming as they have always said this is their ideology. “We’re always saying there’s no IS in our country and they’re homegrown militants. They always wanted to be connected with IS and it was even confirmed by the terrorist organisation itself,” he added.

The minister said he is not aware of the news in Indian media that a BGB member will face court martial over the death of a BSF member. “When we’ll know it officially, we’ll take action accordingly,” he said.