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Monday, October 19, 2009

Report on the Meeting of the Standing Committee of the CHT Affairs Ministry

Submitted by: PCJSS CHT

On 18 October 2009 at 11.00 a.m. the sixth meeting of the Standing Committee of the Ministry of CHT Affairs (MoCHTA) held at Cabinet Room of the Jatiyo Sangsad in Dhaka presided over by Janab Shah Alam, President of the Committee. Among others the following persons were present in the meeting:

Members of the Standing Committee –

  1. Mr. Dipankar Talukdar, State Minister, MoCHTA
  2. Mr. Bir Bahadur Ushwesingh, MP, Bandarban
  3. Mr.Jatindra Lal Tripura, MP, Khagrachari
  4. Janab (Retd. Captain) Giasuddin Ahmed MP, Mymensingh
  5. Janab K.M. Khalid, MP, Mymensingh
  6. Ms Aethin Rakhain, MP, Women Seat CHT Regional Council
  7. Mr. Goutam Kumar Chakma, Member, CHTRC
  8. Mr. Krishna Chandra Chakma, Executive Officer in Charge, CHTRC Officials
  9. Janab Abul Hossain, Joint secretary, MoCHTA and 2 other officers of MoCHTA
  10. One member from Bandarban Hill district Council
  11. Representatives of Deputy Commissioners of Rangamati, Khagrachari & Bandarban Hill Districts.

Discussion & Decisions

(1) In the meeting the proceeding of the fifth meeting of the committee held in Rangamati on 18/08 2009 was approved, which contained mainly about a decision of cancellation of some hundred plots of lands leased out but were not used within the 10 years and allotment of lands through discussion with the MoCHTA, CHTRC and HDCs. With regard to the decision about allotment of lands, CHTRC member Goutam Kumar Chakma asked to do it as per the CHT Accord after resolution of land disputes and rehabilitation of Tribal refugees and internally Displaced Tribal Families and to add some words about it in the decision. The Committee assured that the allotment would be done as per the decision through discussion with CHTRC & HDCs. So there was nothing to worry about it.

(2) MoCHTA placed a brief report on the development of the implementation of the CHT Accord. The matter of issuing permanent Resident Certificate in CHT was pointed out. J L Tripura asked to exclude Deputy Commissioners (DCs) in issuing this one. But the MoCHTA official Abul Hossain explained the DCs have been doing it as per the CHT Regulatuion, 1900. Goutam Kumar Chakma told that there was no provision in the CHT Regulation for it. Finally, it was decided that CHTRC would place it in writing about it and then recommendation would be provided to MoCHTA for action.

(3) The issue of starting Land Survey as recommended by the Land Commission Chairman was discussed. Goutam Kumar Chakma told that the meetings convened by the Land Commission Chairman were not of the Commission and the Chairman of the CHTRC, who is a member of the Commission could not attend them owing to improper and urgent notices. Goutam Kumar Chakma explained that CHT Land Survey is not a function of the Commission. It has been a Quasi Judicial Body to settle land disputes in CHT only. He further explained that Land Survey in CHT at the moment based on the Bhumi Khatian (CHT) Ordinance, 1984 would mean legalise the plots illegally provided to the settlers in 1980, which would make the land disputes more complicated. The Committee asked CHTRC to place report on it later and based on it decision would be taken by the committee.

(4) Mr. Bir Bahadur MP urged the committee to arrange a conference on the Acts and Rules of CHT for proper orientation of the concerned authorities.

(5) Goutam Kumar Chakma, as instance raised the point of drafting the National Education Policy without consultation of the CHTRC, which might be conflicting with the HDCs Regulations in the coming days. Mr. Giasuddin Ahmed, at it asked Goutam Kumar Chakma to place recommendation, if any to the Committee soon. Goutam Kumar acceded to it and the Committee adopted it.

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