In response to the incident of alleged burning of land and orchards of Mro and Tripura community in Lama upazila of Bandarban, three organisations in Chattogram have placed seven-point demand, including returning the land to the indigenous people.
At a press conference organised by Chattogram Socheton Nagorik Samaj, Chattogram University Jummo Student Family and Hill Cultural Forum at Chittagong Press Club on Tuesday, Advocate Bhulan Lal Bhowmik, convener of Socheton Nagorik Samaj, read out a written statement.
The statement claimed that Lama Rubber Company hired Rohingya people to cut down trees in jhum hills of Mro and Tripura in February and March. Then on 26 April, the mountains were set on fire. As a result, the residents of three neighbourhoods cannot sow seeds even though the zoom cultivation season has passed.
It was further claimed that in 1993-94, the Bandarban district administration leased 1,600 acres of land to 64 persons in Daluchhari and Sorai mouzas of Sorai union of Lama for 40 years. Land leased in the name of an individual is not transferable, but after almost 29 years, Lama Rubber Industries Ltd burned 400 acres of jhum land and orchards, which is a crime.
The seven demands are to return the 400 acres of land to Mro and Tripura, provide compensation to victims, withdraw the cases filed against the victims, arrest land grabbers and bring them to book, provide agricultural help to victim families, ensure security to people and ensure Mro and Tripura students can go to school safely.