A Border Security Force jawan lost his right hand and sustained serious injuries early on Thursday in an alleged attack by Bangladeshi cattle smugglers along the international border in West Bengal, officials said. The jawan also suffered pellet injuries to his lungs, liver, and stomach due to the impact of the country-made bombs that were thrown at him, PTI reported.

The incident occurred near the Angrail border post in the North 24 Parganas district around 3.30 am. Following the incident, the force also issued an alert along the border in South Bengal as it sent out a message of “strong protest” to the Border Guards Bangladesh to control the criminals on their side of the border.

Constable Anisur Rehman was on border duty when he was attacked by a group of around 25 Bangladeshi smugglers, who had entered 200 metres into the Indian territory allegedly to smuggle cattle into Bangladesh with the help of locals, the Border Security Force said.

“The jawan has suffered grievous injuries and he fired a round from his pump action gun in self defence before he fell unconscious,” PTI quoted a senior official as saying. “Reinforcement troops controlled the situation. The smugglers escaped to the other side as it was pitch dark and the area is marked with heavy vegetation and tall grass growth.”

One of the smugglers may have been reportedly injured when the soldier fired his gun. Meanwhile, security personnel have instructed all troops in the south Bengal border area “to adopt an aggressive posture against trans-border criminals and thwart their sinister designs”. The force also added that such incidents of attacks on Border Security Force jawans have become frequent.