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Thursday, May 6, 2010

Ruling party goes in rampage against country's minorities

Source: The Daily Star News

Return houses to 13 Hindu families: High Court Orders police

The High Court yesterday ordered the police administration of Pirojpur to rehabilitate to their houses within five days 13 Hindu families in Mathbaria upzila evicted allegedly by Awami League activists.

It also directed the superintendent of police (SP) of Pirojpur and officer-in-charge (OC) of Mathbaria Police Station to ensure restoration of the victims' lands and other property from the grabbers.

The HC ordered them to provide adequate security to the evicted families.

It is alleged that a group of local AL men occupied houses and property of the 13 families of South Sonakhali village in the last three months.

The HC order came from a bench comprised of AHM Justice Shamsuddin Chowdhury Manik and Justice Md Delwar Hossain.

The court also ordered the OC of Mathbaria to appear before it within a month, and submit a report on compliance with its the order.

SP of Pirojpur Nafiul Islam and OC of Mathbaria Nurul Haque appeared before the HC bench and tendered unconditional apology for not complying with its earlier order.

Upon a writ petition filed by Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh, the bench on April 25 directed the SP and the OC to arrest within 48 hours the persons involved in grabbing houses and lands of the families.

The SP and the OC told the court yesterday that they could not arrest anybody in this connection since no specific case was filed.

Human rights activist Rabindra Ghose, who had visited the spot, described in the court yesterday the incidents of land house grabbing.

Advocate Manzill Murshid appeared for the petitioner and Deputy Attorney Ggeneral Nazrul Islam Talukder for the police.

'Include stakeholders in preparing census data of adivasis'

Source: The Daily Star News

Traditional social structures of indigenous communities and organisations working on them should be included in the process of preparing census data of adivasis in 2011 to make it reliable, speakers told a city meeting yesterday.

They said individual indigenous communities should be identified and represented separately in the census and clustered together as ethnic people.

Research and Development Collective (RDC) in association with International Labour Organisation organised the view exchange meeting titled 'National Census 2011: tasks to identify numbers of indigenous people according to their ethnic identity' at the Jatiya Press Club.

Presenting the keynote speech, RDC General Secretary Prof Mesbah Kamal said the census data on the indigenous people prepared in 2001 is unreliable and politically motivated.

He said it would be impossible to take effective development programmes for the ethnic people without accurate data on them.

Prof Kamal suggested the government to conduct orientation training for the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics officials to cope with the indigenous people's issues.

He also suggested reviewing the questionnaire format for the census due in 2011 in consultation with the opinion leaders of indigenous people and experts.

Lawmaker of Khagrachhari Jyotindra Lal Tripura said if the headman and karbari were included in the data collection process of the census, then the right data and information could come out.

Right information and data would help the government undertake effective development process for the indigenous people, he said.

Sanjeeb Drong, general secretary of Bangladesh Adivasi Forum, said the government can take help from the formats of census of the neighbouring countries to make questionnaire format for the census to be held in 2011.

Khagrachhari District Headman Association leader Shaktipad Tripura also spoke at the meeting with Justice Golam Rabbani in the chair.