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Settlers clear indigenous land

In August 2007 Bangladesh army backed Muslim settlers broke into the boundary of Sadhantila Buddhist Temple in Dighinala and began clearing the land for erecting houses inside the temple boundary.

200 Mro families live in fear of settlers and Rohingya terrorists in Bandarban

June 25, 2009, about 200 ethnic Mro families in Ronjupara, Penaipara, Chakkoipara and Bhattyapara under Tonkaboti Union in Bandarban have been living in fear of Muslim settlers. Since the attack on a villager of Penaipara on 18 June, the residents of the area have been living in fear of further settler attacks on them.

The villagers spoke of their sense of insecurity at a press conference held at Bandarban press club on Sunday. The chairman and members of Tonkaboti Union Council and village chiefs at the press conference demanded that Shaha Alam and his Muslim settler cohorts are arrested and brought to justice.

At the press conference Tonkaboti Union Council Chairman Purna Chandra Mro said: ‘Shah Alam, a resident of Choromba area under Lohagora Upazila in Chittagong, has occupied without legal documents hundreds of acres of land belonging to Mro people with the help of his Rohingya Muslim terrorist gang. As a result the Mro people of Ronjupara and Penaipara have been unable to cultivate Jum for the last three years, plagued by dire financial crisis and compelled to live a substandard life. Complaints have been lodged with the government administration but to no avail, and the lack of effective measures on the part of the government has been a shot in the arms of terrorist Shah Alam.’

Expressing anger village chief of Ronjupara, Luring Mro said: ‘I can no longer enter the land where we have been cultivating Jum for generations.’ He said Shah Alam and his Rohingya Muslim terrorists tortured Rengrao while he was working at a Jum field. He is still undergoing treatment in Bandarban Hospital. A case has been filed against six persons including Shah Alam. However police has so far failed to arrest any of them.

UP member Majeda Begum and Ashraf Mian told the press conference that they have been living in peaceful co-existence with the Mro. As Shah Alam has illegally occupied the lands of Mro people, who are simple and peaceful, they cannot cultivate their Jum fields and have to live in starvation. Bandarban Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Anupam Barua said Shah Alam has no land in Tonkaboti Union. He is doing this defying an order not to occupy Jum lands belonging to Mro people.

News No. 73/2009, June 25, 2009

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