Pankaj asks NHRC chief to resign
The National Human Rights Commission (NHCR) chairman should resign for failing to protect the rights of indigenous communities in Bandarban's Naikhyangchhari upazila, said Pankaj Bhattacharya, president of United National Awami Party, yesterday.
“Chak and Mro families are being evicted and their human rights are being violated but the commission has not taken visible steps,” he said.
Land grabbers evicted 14 families of Chak community with repeated death threats from their ancestral homes at Chak Para at Badurjhiri of Naikhyangchhari on March 15. Seven more families were evicted from the same place three years ago.
Addressing a press conference organised by a civic delegation, which recently visited the areas, in the capital's Liberation War Museum, Pankaj urged the chairman to give a statement within today over steps taken to protect the rights of indigenous people.
The delegation demanded that the families be provided security to return to their lands and that the perpetrators be arrested.
NHCR has turned into a “puppet institution” and is not aware of people's rights being violated, said columnist Syed Abul Maksud, demanding reformation of the government's policy in dealing with indigenous issues.
Assistant Prof Razib Mir of Jagannath University read out a report based on the visit.