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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sajek victims will boycott BNP Parliamentary team

The victims of the 19-20 February Sajek attacks will boycott the upcoming visit of the BNP parliamentary team, says a statement issued by Sajek Land Protection Committee today.

“The Sajek Nari Samaj, the Sajek Land Protection Committee and the residents of Sajek will boycott the visit of BNP Parliamentary team on 15 March for its involvement in the 19-20 February army-settler attacks in Sajek, for taking side with the attackers and for its ultra-nationalist and communal policies on CHT.” the statement said.

“The aim of the visit, like the visit by Awami League’s parliamentary team, is to cover up the attacks and save the perpetrators.” it added.

The SLPC urged the government to constitute a judicial inquiry committee to inquire into the attacks in Sajek and Khagrachari.

The statement is signed by Shanti Bijoy Chakma, a member of the SLPC.


news source: chtnews.com

Army searches UPDF leader’s house in Khagrahcari

The army searched the house of Ujjal Smriti Chakma, chief organiser of UPDF Khagrachari District Unit, in Khabangpujjya in Khagrachari town, a UPDF member said.

The army personnel carried out the search at 11:30am today.

“At first they surrounded the house and then entered it without permission and forced all those present in the house out.” Kalo Priya Chakma, a district level leader of the United Peoples Democratic Front, told chtnews.com quoting Ujjal Chakma’s family members.

He said the soldiers had searched each and every corner of the house and everything in the house, turning it upside down. However, they found nothing incriminating.

The army personnel also threatened and misbehaved with Ms Shanti Rani Chakma, 30, the house maid.

Ujjal, who contested from Khagrachari constituency in the last parliamentary elections held in December 2008, was not present when the search was made.

Military patrol and search operations have increased in Khagrachari town since the violent communal attack on Jumma people on 23 February.

Many innocent Jummas have been arrested since then, and it is feared that the government may carry out another round of mass arrests of the Jumma people soon.


news source: chtnews.com

Friday, March 12, 2010

Tension mounts in Khagrachari again as news been reported that five Bengali houses were burnt down early hours of today

Five houses gutted by fire in Khagrachari, tensions mount

The communal forces in Khagrachari have tried to use a fire accident
as a pretext to start another round of communal riots against the
Jumma people, sources say.

According to sources the fire was originated from the kitchen of a
settler house in Rajyo Moni Para under Khagrachari Sadar Upazila in
the small hours of 11 March.

As the fire fighters failed to reach the spot on time, the fire spread
to other four houses in the locality.

The army and local civil administration are trying to use the incident
to whip up anti-Jumma feelings of the settlers, locals alleged.

The army personnel who visited the spot were reported to have
instigated the settlers to “protest”.

“It is the terrorists who have torched your houses. Why are you
keeping mum? Why don’t you protest against it?” the army is reported
to have told the settlers.

The district administration, Fire Brigade and the police have all
tried to interpret the fire accident as a terrorist attack.

The Khagrachari Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Abdullah, Superintendent
of Police Abul Kalam Siddiqe, Additional Deputy Commissioner Mohammad
Gias Uddhin Mogol and Executive Magistrate Mohammad Zainal Abedin
visited the place of occurrence today.

Rajjya Moni Para is located in the southern tip of Khagrachari town.
The district’s women’s college is also located here.

One Jumma resident said, “First of all, police patrol the area all the
time. Secondly, why should any Jumma set fire to their houses? The
Jumma people themselves are living in fear after the 23 February
communal attacks that left about one hundred of their houses burnt and

“In every communal riot it is invariably the stronger communities
which start it,” commented an NGO executive, who is currently
researching on the patterns of communal attacks in CHT.

He said that during the turbulent years of so-called
counter-insurgency there had been numerous attempts to find pretexts
to set off communal violence directed at Jumma villagers.

Citing an example he said the settlers had once secretly put the dead
body of a settler near the house of late Upendra Lal Chakma at
Mahajonpara, who was then in Tripura refugee camp. “The settler died a
natural death, but yet they tried to use him to launch attacks on
Jumma areas.”

Similar incidents also took place in southern CHT district of
Bandarban and other areas, he added.

“As recently as July last year the settlers resorted to the killings
of their fellow brothers to thwart the withdrawal of the army from
CHT. As the police administration acted somewhat neutrally at the time
the settlers’ attempt to start communal riots failed,” he said.


news source: chtnews.com

Two Jumma women raped by army

Two Jumma women are alleged to have been raped by army in Matiranga in Khagrachari district.

The victims have been identified as Barun Bala Tripura (30) wife of late Jala Kumar Tripura and Kalpana Tripura (30) wife of late Shashindra Tripura. Both of them hail from Shonkhola Para village in Matiranga.

The rape of the two women comes one day after the whole world celebrated 100th International Women’s Day on 8 March.

According to sources, on the day of incident, 9 March, the victims went to a jungle near Toikatang army camp under Matiranga zone to collect sun grass.

Around 9AM six army personnel led by Sepoy Habib (known as dariwala or bearded one) from the camp caught and raped them for 4 hours in the jungle.

Around 1pm some Jumma villagers, who were passing by the same jungle, saw the army personnel dragging and pulling the two women.

The women screamed for help and the army men were forced to let them go when they saw the villagers.

The camp commander Mehedi was not present in the camp when the incident took place. He went out on a duty to Matiranga bazaar, putting Kamal in charge of the camp.

Following the incident, the Matiranga zone commander visited Toikatang camp and called the local village elders to a meeting where he threatened them not to publicize the rape.

Ms Renu Bala Tripura, a member of Guimara Union Council, confirmed the incident and accused the army of a cover-up.

“The army is putting pressure on the village elders not to publicize the incident.” she said.

HWF Vice President Nirupa Chakma strongly condemned the rape of the two Tripura women and urged the government to bring the culprits to justice.

“As long as the army and the settlers are there in the CHT, there will be a perennial threat to the security of the Jumma women.” she said.


news source: chtnews.com