Indigenous people of Tangail's Madhupur upazila staged demonstration in the upazila today, bringing an allegation that the forest department is attempting to evict them from their own land in the name of recovering forest lands.
Terming the forest department's attempt to evict them a conspiracy, hundreds of people from Garo, Koch and Barman communities brought out a procession and formed a human chain in Madhupur bus stand area.
They also submitted a memorandum to the prime minister through Madhupur Upazila Nirbahi Officer Arifa Zohura, reports our Tangail correspondent.
They also announced to hold a "grand rally" on local Jalchhatra field on January 31.
Speaking at the programme, Eugin Nokrek, president of Joyenshahi Adivasi Unnayan Parishad, said, "We recently learnt from a report published in a national daily that the government has decided to recover the country's occupied forest lands. The eviction drive is supposed to start from January 30. We have also learnt that this drive will start from Gazipur first and Tangail has been kept second in the list. Local indigenous people have been passing days in fear of eviction."
Talking to our correspondent over telephone, Dr Jahirul Haque, divisional forest officer (DFO) of Tangail, said they did not issue any notice to the local forest-dwellers in this regard.
"The government has decided to recover 2.78 lakh acres of forest land across the country, which were captured by grabbers. But we did not get any directive in this regard," added the forest official.