Bangladesh: BIWN And HWF Organise Human Chain Demanding Justice For Kalpana Chakma In Dhaka

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    On 5 January 2012 at 11:00 am Bangladesh Indigenous Women’s Network (BIWN) and Hill Women’s Federation (HWF) organised human chain demanding justice for Kalpana Chakma in front of National Museum at Shahbag in Dhaka. BIWN and HWF rejected CID’s final report on the case of abduction of Kalpana Chakma and demanded independent, impartial and credible investigation into the abduction.Speakers also demanded trial of and exemplary punishment to the perpetrators of violence against indigenous women and children of the country including Chittagong Hill Tracts by conducting independent, impartial and credible investigation into the violations. They also demanded to withdraw all temporary camps including ‘Operation Uttoron’ and to implement the CHT Accord.
    Chairman of Ain O Salish Kenda Dr. Hamida Hossain urged to all including lawyers and human rights activists to protest against the hearing to be held on 13 January 2013 on the basis of false and fabricated CID’s report. It was very disgraceful that no real abductor is yet to be prosecuted since the incident happened long time before. Eminent human rights activist Dr. Sadeka Halim said that State has responsibility to provide security for all. She said that it is the responsibility of State to ensure trial of and punishment to the persons involved with the abduction of Kalpana Chakma.
    Theatre activist Rokeya Prachi said that the vested groups have been pushing the government to turn the abduction of Kalpana Chakma into the other direction. The investigation report already created questions about the justice of abduction of Kalpana Chakma. She demanded impartial and credible investigation into the abduction and arrest of perpetrators. Dhaka University teacher Jobaida Nasreen Kona said there were continuous attempts to hide and protect the real perpetrators. She urged the government to public where about Kalpana Chakma.
    S M Saikat of Justice for Bangladesh said that there were several indigenous women who were killed, tortured, abducted and raped like as Kalpana Chakma, but the perpetrators of these gross human rights violations go unpunished. General Secretary of Kapaeeng Foundation and Youth & Student Affairs Secretary of Bangladesh Indigenous Peoples Forum Chaitali Tripura said that there was no example where the indigenous women got justice against the killing, rape, abduction and physical assault on indigenous women and children. She cited examples of killing of Sujata Chakma, Thumaching Marma, Balimila Chakma, Ponemala Tripura. These incidents showed that perpetrators get encouraged to commit such crimes as they enjoy full impunity.
    Besides, Nurun Nahar Begum of Action-Aid, Tandra Chakma of Manusher Jonno Foundation, Mong Sing Neo of Kapaeeng Foundation, Kajal Andullah of Acitvista, Hana Shams Ahmed of CHT Commission, Mohan Rabidash of Bangladesh Adivasi Chhatra Sangram Parishad, Sulav Chakma of Hill Students Council spoke in the event. The event was conducted by Chanchana Chakma, joint convenor of BIWN and president of HWF. Among others, Bangladesh Indigenous Peoples Forum, Justice for Bangladesh, Acitvista, ALRD, Kapaeeng Foundation, Action-Aid, Biplabi Nari Sanghati, Bangladesh Chhatra Federation, Bangladesh Adivasi Chhatra Sangram Parishad, Manusher Jonno Foundation, Ain O Salish Kendra, Hill Students Council etc. also expressed their solidarity. It is mentionable that on 12 June 1996 at mid-night Kalpana Chakma, the Organizing Secretary of Hill Women’s Federation (HWF), was abducted from her home at New Lalyaghona under Baghaichari upazila in Rangamati district. Her brother Kilindi Kumar Chakma identified the abductor as then Lieutenant Ferdous of Kojoichari army camp and two Village Defence Party (VDP) personnel Nurul Haq and Saleh Ahmed and filed a case against them.
    On 2 September 2010, a Rangamati court ordered the reinvestigation of Kalpana Chakma’s case following Kalindi Kumar Chakma’s rejection of the Baghaichari police report, saying that it failed to identify her abductors. Recently Chittagong CID submitted its final report of the case. Kalindi Kumar Chakma has been asked to be present at Rangamati District Court on 13 January 2013 for a hearing. Lawyers and activists following the case has reviewed this new report and informed that it is just a reproduction of the earlier reports. There is no sign of reinvestigation. They have failed to identify anyone involved in the abduction. Lawyers and activists fear that on this new court date, the case will be dismissed on similar grounds.