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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Hill people still victim of land grabbing: Larma

Source: The Daily Star News

Santu Larma

Chief of Parbatya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samity (PCJSS) Jyotirindra Bodhipriya Larma yesterday said Bangla speaking people from the plain land are still grabbing the lands of jummo (indigenous) people in Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) under the shelter of a vested interest group.

Security personnel are maintaining dominance over the hilly areas in the name of peacekeeping while the people of CHT region are passing their days amidst insecurity, the PCJSS leader, who is popularly known as Santu Larma, said at 'freshers' reception' on the campus of Rangamati Government College.

He was addressing as chief guest at the event organised by the college unit of Pahari Chhatra Parishad (PCP), a student front of PCJSS, in the morning.

Referring to the government's decision to set up a university of science and technology and a medical college in Rangamati, Larma, also chairman of CHT Regional Council, said new problems will be created in CHT if those institutions are set up without considering whether CHT people want them.

"Many indigenous people were evicted due to the creation of Kaptai Dam. They lost their arable land and homesteads. The jummo people do not want to lose their lands any more," said the former guerrilla leader.

"During the 39 years of independence, we have failed to establish a progressive and democratic government in the country. And so, crime and corruption has grabbed the country and human right is being violated everywhere," he lamented.

Blaming the government for politicising all the three hill district councils in CHT, he said nowadays the poor people have hardly any scope to get help or assistance as the ruling party men are enjoying all the facilities from the organisations.

Suggesting the students to acquire knowledge from the outside environment alongside academic education to become worthy citizen, Larma called upon them to come forward for full implementation of the CHT deal.

Chaired by Dhiresh Chakma, a student and president of PCP Rangamati College unit, the function was also addressed, among others, by civil society leader Prakriti Ranjan Chakma, former PCP central president Udoyan Tripura, its central committee general secretary Sunirmol Dewan and district secretary Nitol Chakma.

Later, a band show programme was held at the college campus.

Generating awareness on minority rights with a play

Source: The Daily Star News

The play and performances aim to generate awareness and disseminate information among the mainstream communities about indigenous people and dalit groups.Photo: STAR

“Handi Kutum”, a play that aims to generate awareness on the rights of indigenous people and dalit, was staged at different villages under Sadar and Pirgonj upazila of Thakurgaon last Tuesday and Wednesday.

On Tuesday the play was staged at Matrigaon and Kaharpara villages under Sadar upazila. On Wednesday Bashmonipara and Azlabad villages witnessed the play.

Artistes of a cultural team, consisting of indigenous people, under the project 'Promotion of Rights for Indigenous And Dalits Improvement Programme' (PRODIP) staged the play.

Eco Social Development Organisation (ESDO) organised the programmes in association with HEKS Bangladesh with a view to develop awareness among the indigenous people and dalits about their rights.

The programme also aims to generate awareness and disseminate information among the mainstream communities about indigenous people and dalit groups, so that they can live harmoniously and uphold their traditions.

The play also addressed different social issues, including women's rights, necessity of education, health care, evils of drug abuse and early marriage.

The cast of the play included Chaina Ram Tirki, Rani Kujur, Kanchan Singh, Maggi Toppo, Rana Kujur, Ekka, Shuren Toppo and Shanchoy Miniz. Mohammad Shahin coordinated the play.

Earlier discussions were held at these venues where General Secretary of Pirgonj Upazila Adibashi Unnayan Forum, Dandu Mormu and human rights activists Mominur Rahaman Bishal, Mohammad Shahin, among others, spoke.

Bangladesh Hindu Buddha Christian Oikya Parishad leaders call on PM

Source: The New Nation

A delegation of Bangladesh Hindu Buddha Christian Oikya Parishad on Sunday called on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the latter's office here.

The delegation members apprised the Prime Minister of various problems of the parishad, said Prime Minister's Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad after the meeting.

During the meeting, Sheikh Hasina gave them a patient hearing and assured them to look into the matters.

President of the Parishad Maj. Gen. (Retd) C R Dutta, Bir Uttam, led the delegation which was comprised of its General Secretary Rana Das Gupta, leaders of the parisad Adv Subrata Chowdhury, Shiril Sikder, Nirmal Chatterjee, Babul Devnath and Barrister Biplab Barua.

Among others, Secretary to the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) Molla Waheeduzzaman and Prime Minister's Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad were present.

Later, another delegation of Bangladesh Buddha Christi Pracher Sangha, led by its President Sudhananda Mohathero, called on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at her office.

During the meeting, they invited the Prime Minister to attend the Lord Buddha statue installation ceremony at Kamalapur Buddha Bihar in the capital on February 23 next.

Sheikh Hasina accepted the invitation to attend the function. Mentioned that Thailand is sending the statue of the Lord Buddha to the Buddhist community in Bangladesh.

General Secretary of the organization Dr Pranab Barua, among others, were in the delegation.

Secretary to the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) Molla Waheeduzzaman, Prime Minister's Press Secretary Abul Kalam Azad and PM's Private Secretary Nazrul Islam Khan were present.

BJP bats for Bangla Hindus

Source: The Telegraph

Guwahati, Oct. 30: The Assam BJP took up the cause of displaced Bangladeshi Hindus at a daylong meeting held here today. It requested the government not to brand them as illegal migrants.

Though the party is against influx from Bangladesh, it classifies migrant Hindus as refugees. State BJP president Ranjit Dutta said the BJP's stand is that any Hindu who crossedover to Assam from Bangladesh is a refugee as they are victims of religious and political persecution. “We will oppose any move to brand such displaced Hindus living in Assam as illegal migrants,” he said.

Several senior state BJP leaders, including Kabindra Purkayastha and Rajen Gohain attended the meeting.

The BJP’s selective stand on the issue could snowball into a crisis since All Assam Students Union, Asom Gana Parishad — with which the party had an election tie-up— and other like-minded organisations are demanding deportation of illegal migrants as per Assam Accord irrespective of their religion or the language they speak._The BJP leaders who spoke at meeting held at Bishnu Nirmala Trust Auditorium at Latasil recalled that soon after independence, the Union government has assured unconditional citizenship to Hindus, who migrated to India (from Pakistan, including present Bangladesh) after Partition.

BJP MP from Guwahati Bijoya Chakraborty said that Hindus who have migrated to Assam from Bangladesh due to persecution should be considered as refugees as their condition is no different from those who migrated to India from West Pakistan after partition.

Several senior state BJP leaders, including Kabindra Purkayastha, Rajen Gohain and Mission Ranjan Das, among others also attended the meeting.


BCL men vandalise Ramna temple, 3 held

Source: The Daily Star News

A group of Bangladesh Chhatra League activists vandalise two idols at Ramna Kali Mandir in the capital on Sunday over taking control of the shops. Photo: STAR

A group of Bangladesh Chhatra League activists vandalised two idols and several shops at Ramna Kali Mandir in the capital on Sunday over taking control of the shops.

Police arrested three activists of the BCL, the ruling party backed student organisation, from the spot and produced them before a Dhaka court.

Rezaul Karim, officer-in-charge of Shahbagh Police Station, said some 70 to 80 BCL activists of Utpal Shah group from Jagannath Hall, a Dhaka University dormitory specialised for the students from Hindu and Buddhist communities, vandalised two shops and the heads of two idols inside the temple around 12:30am.

Hearing the incidents, Shahbagh police rushed in and arrested Ananato Bhowmic, a first-year student of Sankskrita department, and Prakash, a master’s student of the same department, and Rimon Biswas, a second year student of Institute of Social Welfare and Research at the university.

Campus sources said activists of Utpal Shaha group vandalised the shops run by BCL central committee leader Hemonta Bepari and his friend Bipul for taking control of the shops there.

The police officer said Utpal group launched the attack following a conflict between him and Pankaj over getting posts in the temple maintaining committee, setting up the shops there and spreading unilateral hegemony in the temple area ahead of Kali Puja.