Santu Larma calls indigenous youths to march for rights
Youths belonging to ethnic minority should come forward spontaneously to strengthen the ongoing struggle for their rights, urged Bangladesh Adivasi Forum President Jyotirindra Bodhipriya Larma.
“Indigenous people will have to survive through struggle. They (indigenous people) have no alternative,” said Larma, popularly known as Santu Larma.
He was addressing a rally organised by Bangladesh Adivasi Forum marking International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples today at the central Shaheed Minar in the capital.
“The government is not sympathetic and cordial to protect rights of indigenous people. We get a reflection of such attitude through many of its activities,” said Larma, also the president of Parbatya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samity (PCJSS).
“We have been struggling since independence of Bangladesh to protect existence as well as social, political, economic and land rights....our struggle will continue,” he said
“We want to see Bangladesh as a non-communal country where indigenous people can live with all fundamental rights,” he said.
Civil Aviation Minister Rashed Khan Menon, eminent rights activist Sultana Kamal, former National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) Chairman Mizanur Rahman, several rights activists, academicians, politicians and civil society members, among others, also spoke there.
This year, the day is being observed globally with the theme “Indigenous peoples' right to education”.
However, indigenous people in Bangladesh are observing the day with the theme “Indigenous peoples' rights to education, land and life”.