Hill Voice, 12 August 2022, Bandarban: It has been alleged that a newly constructed Buddhist temple was attacked, looted and vandalized by land grabbers hired by Lama Rubber Industries Limited in Sarai Union of Lama Upazila under Bandarban District. The attackers also looted two metal Buddha statues.
According to local sources, on August 10, 2022 around 3:00 pm, a group of 25/30 miscreants led by known terrorist and land grabber Nurul Haque Noor attacked the newly built Ashok Buddhist Bihara at Rengyen Karbari Para with sharp weapons and batons. The attackers ransacked the Bihara and looted two idols.
Locals complained that Moazzem Hossain, the owner of Lama Rubber Industries Limited, has engaged these land grabbers for the purpose of expropriating more land from the indigenous villagers. They said, Moazzem Hossain has been conspiring to occupy about 400 acres of land belonging to the local residents of Tripura and Mro communities for a long time. That is why they attacked the local indigenous villagers and set fire to their houses several times.
Langkam Mro (Karbari), the member secretary of the newly formed Bhumi Raksha Sangram Committee for the protection of land, said that the terrorists instigated by Moazzem Hossain of Lama Rubber Bagan Industries have become desperate to occupy 400 acres of land belonging to the residents of Mro and Tripura villagers. Villagers are often threatened. Attempts are being made to plant rubber trees by forcibly encroaching on lands of indigenous villagers.
Fadaram Tripura (Karbari), joint convener of the Bhumi Raksha Sangram Committee, said that attacking and vandalizing religious institutions is a punishable offence. But after informing the local police administration after the incident, they remained silent. On the other hand, rubber company people are often threatened to attack and to lodge lawsuits to take over Jum land from local Mro and Tripura people.
It is known that recently the indigenous Buddhist villagers of Rengyen Karbari Para of Sarai Union built a monastery called Ashoka Buddhist Temple. The Bihara was inaugurated on 11th July 2022 in the presence of Sumananda Bhikkhu and since then the religious work also started in the Bihara.
It is to be noted that on April 9, 2022, land grabbers of Rubber Company cut down various fruit trees and other saplings and teak of indigenous villagers to occupy about 400 acres of Jum land of local Mro and Tripura communities and on April 26, 2022, Jum land was set on fire. Then on July 13, 2022 Bhumi Raksha Sangram Committee convener Rangdhajan Tripura was attacked and seriously injured in the headman’s office of Doluchari Mouza.