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Cravings for chocolate lands boy in prison

A Bangladeshi teenager was sent to jail in India on Wednesday for illegally crossing into the neighbouring country to buy his favourite brand of chocolate.

The boy used to swim across the Shalda river to Sipahijala district in the Indian state of Tripura to buy chocolate, sources in India’s Border Security Force said yesterday.

They said the boy aged 13 or 14 is a resident of Khaldanadi village under Brahmanbaria Police Station.

He used to sneak through a hole in the barbed wire fence to buy chocolate from a shop in Kalamchoura village in India, before returning home the same way.

This adventure came to an end on Wednesday when BSF members apprehended the boy, who was undertaking another such journey, said Banoj Biplab Das, Sonamura sub divisional police officer (SDPO).

The boy was handed over to police, who produced him before a court that placed him on 15-day remand in judicial custody, he said.

“During interrogation, the boy confessed to sneaking into India to buy chocolate. One hundred Bangladeshi taka was found with him but he did not possess anything illegal. He was arrested for entering India without valid documents,” Das said.

“Further investigation is underway. He will be produced before the court again,” The SDPO said, adding that no one from Eman’s family had contacted Indian authorities yet.

“Bangladeshis often sneak into India to buy groceries and attend social functions. BSF generally ignores them on humanitarian grounds and takes action against smugglers and traffickers. But as far as I know, the boy had only come to buy chocolate,” said Elius Hossain, a Kalamchoura resident.

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