One Jumma arrested, villagers under threat and harassment by Bangladesh Army in Jurachari

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Photo: Symbolic

Hill Voice, 5 June 2024, Rangamati: It is reported that the Bangladesh Army detained an innocent Jumma villager, threatened locals with brush fires and ate up the food stored by the villagers during a harassing patrol operation in Maidung Union of Jurachari Upazila under Rangamati District.

Reportedly, Ritu Chakma (30) son of Lal Mohan Chakma was picked, on 4 June 2024 at around 10 am, up from his house by the army returning to their camps after a four-day harassing patrol operation. The victim is from Panchari village of Ward No. 6 of Maidung Union under Jurachari Upazila of Rangamati district. Around 2 pm, the army personnel reached the Banajogichara army zone with the victim. Later, the army personnel asked Ritu Chakma to call his wife with an army person’s mobile phone and made her to inquire whether Pandak Chakma, Bang Chakma and Jana Samhati Samiti workers had come back to the houses.

It is also reported, the army on way back to their camps ordered the seven Jumma families near to the helipad being constructed destroying newly planted paddy of Jum farm of local Jummas at Beltola to go elsewhere in few days vacating their homes and lands. The army threatened and said that if they find those families there in the future, they will be killed by brush fire.

Allegedly, while staying at Beltola, the army personnel had consumed various food items including rice, chicken stored by the poor Jumma families without paying.

In this circumstances, Jumma families are reported to be expressing extreme helplessness and uncertainty of their livelihood.

It is to be noted that from June 1 to June 4, 2024, an army group of 85 personnel led by Captain Sayed and Captain Asif from Banajogichara army zone of Jurachari Upazial conducted a harassing patrol operation in Beltola area of Ward No. 6 of Maidung Union and Janata Para village of Ward No. 5 under Jurachari Sadar Union.

While staying at Beltola and Janata Para, the army personnel took away all the mobile phones of the Jumma villagers and kept them in their custody. This caused massive disruption in people’s essential communication and daily activities.

Besides, army personnel are reported to have destroyed the newly planted paddy of Jum fields of Indra Mohan Chakma (55), son of late Nanga Chakma and constructed a helipad there in Beltola area.

On June 4 around 10 am, the army personnel left the Beltola area for their camps.