'Rights of Bangalees in CHT not curtailed' | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 21, 1998 / LAST MODIFIED: 09:52 PM, June 26, 2013

PM's question-answer session

'Rights of Bangalees in CHT not curtailed'

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in parliament yesterday categorically rejected the notion that the peace accord has curtailed the Bangalees' right to possess or protect their property and civil rights in the CHT, reports UNB.

Responding to a question from Panchanan Biswas (AL-Khulna) during the PM's question hour, she said it is also not correct that the DC's authority relating to lands in the hill districts has been curbed by the agreement.

Under the provision of the peace accord, the Prime Minister said the Bangalees living in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) will have the right to possess and protect their lands. She said the Deputy Commissioners (DCs) would enjoy the same authority as they did in the past.

Referring to Clause 64 of the 1989 Act relating to lands, Hasina said that without prior permission of the Parishad, no place or land within the hill districts could be leased, sold out or transferred as amended by a provision of the peace agreement.

However, this provision will not be applicable for the reserve forests, Kaptai hydro-electric project area, Betbunia satellite area, state-owned industrial units and the lands recorded in the name of the government.

Hasina also said that after signing of the peace agreement, foreign donors and aid giving agencies have pledged financial assistance for the development of the CHT.

In reply to a question from Mir Sakhawat Ali Daru (AL-Bagerhat) she said heads of government, politicians of different countries of the world and international donors have welcomed the CHT peace accord.

Sheikh Hasina yesterday informed parliament that more tough laws are under process to curb women and child repression and combat terrorism.

"Practical steps are being initiated to fight terrorism and ensure peace in public life," she said replying to a question from Dr Mohd Rustam Ali Farazi (JP-Pirojpur).

Hasina said new posts of 5,000 policemen have been created and the process is underway to recruit for those posts at different levels of the police administration.

Besides, the police forces will be well equipped with necessary transports and radio sets. Besides, six more thanas will be set up within the Dhaka Metropolitan areas, she told the House.

"No terrorist group is getting patronisation from the government," the Prime Minister said, adding that she had asked the police to sternly deal with the terrorists irrespective of party and opinion.

The Prime Minister hoped that the opposition would refrain from "backing the terrorists" and help the government to fight them out from society.

Relief fund
Sheikh Hasina also assured parliament that the PM's Relief Fund must be used on humanitarian ground, "not on partisan outlook."Replying to a string of queries during the PM's question time, she said, "We're helping the destitute on humanitarian ground from this fund and it will continue...We will not follow the BNP's example of giving Tk 25 lakh from the PM's Relief Fund to each BNP MP."Adv Fazle Rabbi (JP-Gaibandha), Mirza Azam (AL-Jamalpur) and Abdul Latif Mirza (AL-Sirajganj) put questions and supplementaries to the PM.

The Prime Minister told Fazle Rabbi that a total of Tk 14,29,38,360 were spent from the PM's Relief and Welfare Fund till January 17 this year since her assumption of power.

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