On the recommendation of the NHRC, the Union Home Ministry has paid Rs. five lakh each as monetary relief to the next of kin of two persons, namely Miltan Sheikh and Santu Sheikh, killed by the BSF personnel in District Murshidabad, West Bengal on 28th December, 2010.
The Commission had made the recommendation for monetary relief after holding that the BSF claim could not be accepted that its Constable opened fire in imminent danger to his life as no proof was provided in the form of his treatment record or wound certificate to indicate any injury on his person due to attack on him with lathis and a sharp edged weapon 'Dah'.
The postmortem report showed that both men were shot once through the skull, with the entry wounds blackened and burnt, confirming that the shots were fired at contact range. If the men were shot at very close range, but without any evidence having inflicted any injury on the Constable, the right of private defense, which the BSF had invoked, did not apply.
The two men were smuggling cattle, and had therefore broken the law, but, as established, they had posed no threat to the life of the Constable who opened fire at a very close range, and clearly shot to kill them which amounted to a grievous violation of human rights.
The complainant had accepted that these men were among a group of cattle smugglers, which had been intercepted by the BSF, but alleged that they were killed in captivity.