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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Larma cries for Jumma solidarity: UNDP-CHTRC joint opinion sharing meet at Rangamati

"Santu Larma at Rangamati: I've been working with unendurable experiance for 11 years." Caption of the Prothom Alo, September 29, 2010, Saradesh, page 16, Web:

Mr. Santu Larma told the audiences yesterday that he has been working for long 11 years with unendurable experience. He remarked that the CHT Accord implementation has not been possible due to government’s insincerity and the bureaucracy's opposition.

Larma anchored the meeting organised jointly by CHT Regional Council and CHTDF (UNDP and western donors’ development vehicle to the CHT) at former TCI (Tribal Cultural Institute) auditorium under the banner "CHT Accord implementation, development and Constitutional recognition". Social, political, community and civil society voices of 3 Hill Districts, both Bengali and Jumma were invited to this daylong meeting. Mr. Robert Stoleman and Mr. Prasenjit Chakma represented CHTDF.

Dr. Manik Lal Dewan (former Rangamati Hill District Council Chair) , Mr. Mani Swapan Dewan (former Deputy Minister, MoCHTA), Mr. Goutam Dewan (former Chairman, Rangamati Hill District Local Government Council) were among other participants.

It has been observed that the invitation was biased. Even, some CHTRC members who are not in good book of Larma and even live at Rangamati town did not get invitation. One responsible person who attended to this meet told the CHT Voice yesterday that a very small number of young leaders were seen while about half of the participants were Larma’s activists and others were elderly persons. The turn out was hardly 200 which could not fill up the 267-chair auditorium.

Rocky Chakma, a businessman from Rangamati put a question whether Larma had meeting with Seikh Hasina, the Prime Minister of the country or he has such plan to discuss on the accord. Larma, seemed to be careful, and replied that there had not been any such, however, he admits for such in future.

The persons among the audiences who took the floor spoke in favour of Jumma solidarity, but in mumbling tone. Larma, in reply, held the Jumma civil society responsible for the Jumma disunity. According his opinion if 3 MPs, 3 HDC Chairmen, 3 Circle Chiefs and the RC Chairman are united then why the CHT Accord can be kept unimplemented.

Larma did not hide his anger in his deliberation against the Prothom Alo, for accommodating UPDF and JSS (which was formed on 10 April this year when Larma convened one-sided party congress) in the series reports (15 instant and onwards) on the CHT situation. The reports recognised the 3 CHT political parties which has also been supported by Raja Devasish Roy. But, according to Larma, there is only one political party in the CHT and it is the JSS. Hence, the Prothom Alo coverage should be only in favour of the Larma's JSS.

The discussants were Goutam Kumar Chakma (CHTRC member), Mangal Kumar Chakma (PCJSS) and Goutam Dewan. Md. Mokhlesur Rahman (editor, the Rangamati), Bijoy Ketan Chakma (convener, MN Larma Foundation), Hari Kishore Chakma (the Prothom Alo reporter) were among others who gave their opinion in the name of raising questions, a reporter tells the CHT Voice.

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