4 January 2023
Several rights organisations today expressed their concern over the ongoing violence against the Mro community in Bandarban’s Lama upazila.
In separate statements, they also blamed the government for their repeated failure to bring into account those who were responsible for the previous attacks.
On early Monday, over 100 attackers, allegedly hired by Lama Rubber Industries Limited, torched and vandalised at least a dozen homes belonging to the Mro community in a village in Lama upazila.
They looted mobile phones, household items, poultries, cattle, and other belongings. The Mro people fled to the jungle to escape physical harm during the attack.
Protesting the incident, rights organisations — Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF), International CHT Commission (CHTC) and Human Rights Forum Bangladesh condemned the attack and demanded punishment for the attackers.
In a statement, MJF said, if the authorities do not take any legal actions against the accused immediately, then such incidents will continue. They demanded rehabilitation of the Mro community.
Meanwhile, CHTC called for effective action to ensure justice, safety, and human rights of the victims.
In a statement, it said they are disturbed as “Lama Rubber Industries Limited has perpetrated another arson attack upon the Mro indigenous community. We call upon the government to act effectively to ensure justice, safety, and human rights of the Mro community.”
Human Rights Forum Bangladesh also demanded that a probe committee be formed and attackers be punished through a proper investigation. They also termed these attacks a violation of human rights.
The three organisations mentioned that the existing culture of impunity encourages these perpetrators to continue such repeated attacks on the indigenous people.
They also demanded that the government provide immediate food support and shelter for the victims and ensure their safety. #