Hill Voice, 10 July 2023, International Desk: Designating the discussion theme as “Situation of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT), Its Impact in Tripura State and Our Obligation”, a discussion meeting took place yesterday (9 July 2023) organized by the Campaign for Humanity Protection (CHP), encompassing the local social leaders of indigenous communities of Gondatuisa and Raisyabari. The meeting was held at the Kobiguru Rabindranath Memorial Higher Secondary School, in Gandatuisa Sub-Doivision, Dhalai District, Tripura State in India.
The meeting was chaired by the President of the CHP and eminent cultural person Niranjan Chakma, while Shanti Bikash Chakma, the General Secretary of the CHP, took charge as the moderator in the meeting. Welcome speech was articulated by Darbacha Chakma, and a written briefing statement concerning the theme was presented by Kalaram Chakma. Among others, Khagendra Tripura, the head teacher of Gandatuisa Higher Secondary School, and Ms Krairi Mog, an eminent writer shared their valuable insights in the gathering, as the guest-speakers.
Along with other participants, Saral Mohan Tripura, the Pumang of Gandatuisa, Bijoy Kumar Riang, the president of the BSCO, Gandatuisa, Ramjoy Tripura, the president of Tripura Chubulai Buthu, Gandatuisa, Boikuntha Chakma, the Suloani Karbari of Gandatuisa, Gopal Chakma, the Suloani Karbari of Kanchanpur, and Paritosh Chakma the Suloani Karbari of Longtharai Valley were present in the meeting.
The speakers addressed a range of crucial issues, including the sufferings of the indigenous people of the CHT, being subjected to the structural suppression and oppression, and gross human rights violation like rape, killing, land grabbing, and religious conversion, since the Partition of 1947.
In his opening speech, Niranjan Chakma said that Campaign for Humanity Protection (CHP) is an NGO, dedicated to the promotion and protection of human rights. It was established on 17 November 2022, and it exposed itself publicly by organizing a conference on the anniversary of the CHT Accord at the Agartala Press Club on 2 December 2022. The overall human rights situation in the CHT is very delicate and highly alarming. The CHT Accord was signed to resolve the CHT problem politically, but after some 26 years after the signing the Accord, it has remained unimplemented.
Ramjoy Tripura said, the CHT has witnessed various forms of problem one after another. 26 years have elapsed but the key provisions of the CHT Accord have not been implemented fully yet. Military rule is continued in the CHT. Bangladesh army are unceasingly inflicting torture, harassment and oppression on the innocent indigenous people of the CHT. In addition, indigenous people are regular victim of communal attack in the CHT; and indigenous women are being subjected to rape, torture and sextual harassment. Innocent Indigenous people are losing their land as the government, based on its policy, relocated Bengali settlers from the plains to the CHT on the land of indigenous people.
Krairi Mog said, Bangladesh is our adjacent neighbor-country. Indigenous people have sacrificed a lot in the liberation war of Bangladesh; they had directly fought joining the liberation war. We had actively supported the Bangladeshi Refugees during Bangladesh liberation war by ensuring refuge for the refugees in our Tripura State. It is a glorious history. We are from one root but India-Pakistan partition made us separated. We also know about history that Sneha Kumar Chakma hoisted India flag in Rangamati in 1947 during the partition.
Now we can understand how foreseer he was. I visited the CHT after five years of the independence of Pakistan and found the indigenous hill people were in peaceful environment in their land. At that time indigenous population was more than 98% in the CHT, but at present they have become nearly half of the population in their land. Muslim settlers have been grabbing land of the indigenous people. To protect our indigenous brothers and sisters in the CHT from that miserable situation, we have to stand up by them, we have to protest covering them. To strengthen our moves for the indigenous people of the CHT, we have to mobilize indigenous people and humanitarian persons not only in Tripura State, but also at international sphere at global flatforms. We must think about the CHT of Bangladesh, because we do have our indigenous brothers and sisters and relatives in the region. We have to remember that indigenous people of the CHT are regular victims of killing, torture, rape, communal attacks, land grabbing and other forms of human rights violation; we must raise voice for our brothers and sisters.
In his concluding remark, the Chair of the meeting Niranjan Chakma said, our newly established Campaign for Humanity Protection (CHP) is a human rights organization. Today’s discussion meeting is about human rights issue. The duty of this organization is to protest against any human rights violation, no matter it happens in India, Sri Lanka or Bangladesh or any parts of the world. We may not be there in person, but we must protest from our position wherever we stay. We must support our indigenous brothers and sisters whenever they become victims of human rights violation. Exactly based on that commitment, we have organized today’s discussion meeting. On behalf of CHP, I do apricates every participant of the meeting for your participation and contribution.