The cattle trade between India and Bangladesh is mostly illegal. The BJP-led government declared its intention to stop it. However, the Government has totally failed to solve the issue.
According to reports by an intelligence agency the illegal cross-border trade is said to be worth Rs 5,000 crore annually. That’s a lot of money for an un-organised sector. An animal’s price may go up to ten times by the time it reaches the potential buyer in Bangladesh.
Cattle traverse hundreds of kilometres from states like Rajasthan, Haryana, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Jharkhand to reach the Bangladeshi cattle markets. They are transported in trucks to their border destinations in West Bengal, Assam, Meghalaya and Tripura.
From these border points, smugglers use either the land route or the water ways through the rivers Kalindi, Ichhamati, Raimangal and Hariabhanga of Bangladesh to finally enter the country.
Bangladesh has traditionally been dependent on supply of cattle from India and other countries. Both the meat and the skin are in great demand.