Kaladan News

July 13 – 14, 2008

 

News

  • Villagers don't sleep nights because of Natala burglars
  • Police and laborers clash, one dead, three injured in Sittwe
  • TPDC forces villagers to buy rubber saplings
  • Prisoners forced to construct Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road
  • SPDC seizes lands from Rohingyas for Natala villagers

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Kaladan News

July 13, 2008

 

Villagers don't sleep nights because of Natala burglars

 

Maungdaw, Arakan State: Villagers in Maung Nama village tract, Maungdaw Township have been passing sleepless nights for fear of Natala burglars who steal their draught cattle from cow sheds during the night.

 

It is a favourable time for farmers to till their paddy fields and to grow paddy. The Natala (Model) villagers are stealing farmers' cattle jeopardizing cultivation.   

 

The Natala villagers are notorious always disturbing the Rohingya community. They loot goods from Rohingya community and steal cattle, fowls, goats and vegetables. They even looted gold ornaments from Nasaka, Burma's border security force personnel's families during the last Water Festival.

 

The authorities were informed by villagers, but took no action covertly encouraging them to do anti-social activities against the Rohingya community.

 

Members of the Rohingya community have been passing sleepless nights and providing sentry duty since Zaw Min (alias) Mortaza (35) was killed by unknown persons on June 23. He was a close aide of Nasaka Director of Nasaka headquarters of Gyikan Pyin (Kawarbill) of Mayngdaw Township and also a native of Maung Nama village. So, Natala villagers are afraid of doing anything against Maung Nama villagers.   

 

The Natala villagers were brought to Arakan State from Burma proper in 2004, and settled in "Aung Thaya" Natala village which is situated Aung Mingala and Wabeg villages of Maungdaw Township. It has about 130 houses, built on confiscated Rohingya farm land.

 

In 2004, there was an incident between Maung Nama Rohingya villagers and Aung Thaya Natala villagers over an issue of stealing a goat from a Rohingya woman villager by Natala villagers in broad daylight. Seeing her goat was being brought by Natala villagers from the field, she raised a hue and cry and the villagers rushed to the spot and two Natala villagers were caught red-handed by the villagers. After that the villagers handed over them to the Village Peace and De velopment Council (VPDC) Chairman to take necessary action. But the VPDC Chairman again handed them over to the Nasaka camp for fear of Natala villagers' retaliation.

 

Hearing of it Natala villagers in three trucks armed with lethal weapons went to the Maung Nama village, and burnt dawn hay heaped by villagers. A clash occurred between two groups and some of the men from both sides were injured. Later, the deputy Tactical Operation Command (TOC) Commander of Buthidaung came and controlled the situation.

 

However, later, eight Rohingya villagers and seven Natala villagers were arrested and sentenced to one month in jail. Hence, Rohingya villagers don't dare to go against Natala villagers for fear of reprisal from the government.

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Kaladan News

July 13, 2008

 

Police and laborers clash, one dead, three injured in Sittwe

 

Sittwe, Arakan State:  A clash between policemen and labourers of No. 1 jetty in Sittwe (Akyab), the capital of Arakan State on July 11, resulted in the death of a policeman and injury to three labourers, according to a local villager. 

 

This incident occurred at the No.1 jetty in Sittwe, at about 10:30 am, when the policemen from No.1 police station were on security duty at the jetty. They demanded Kyat 150 per head per hour from the labourers who worked over time at the jetty after 9 pm. The labourers did not comply with the order and the police tried to take the money forcibly from them. An altercation began and finally led to fighting between the two groups.

 

The policemen have no business collecting tolls from labourers of No.1 jetty of Sittwe (Akyab). Policemen across the country under military rule are notorious and arbitrarily collect tax from people, said a trader in Sittwe.  

 

During the clash, a policeman U Than Lwin died on the spot, and three labourers were critically injured. They were taken to Sittwe General Hospital for treatment. They were identified as one Rakhine and two Rohigya Muslim s.

 

After the clash, four labourers---two Rakhines and two Rohingya Muslims--- were arrested by police.

 

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Kaladan News

July 13, 2008

 

TPDC forces villagers to buy rubber saplings

 

Maungdaw, Arakan State: The Township Peace and Development Council (TPDC), or Mayaka Chairman U Khin Maung Tun recently ordered villagers of Maungdaw Township to buy rubber saplings or seedlings from government nurseries and to grow it in suitable places, according to a social worker of Maung Nama village. 

 

The Mayaka authorities in Maungdaw Township distributed 1,500 to 3,000 rubber saplings to the village tracts at the rate of Kyat 300 per sapling across the township. The will make about kyat 0.9 million Kyat from a village tract by selling rubber saplings. This is a lucrative business they are into, said a trader in Maungdaw Town on condition of anonymity.

 

VPDC members are doing the same thing according to the size of the family. Villagers have to buy saplings at Kyat 300 with carrying charges as extra.

 

The authorities did not say where the saplings are to be planted. The idea is to make money only, said a schoolteacher seeking anonymity. 

 

To get rubber seedlings or saplings, the Mayaka (TPDC) and Nasaka, Burma's border security force in Kyikan Pyin (Kawarbill) in Maungdaw Township sowed seeds in the nurseries with the cooperation of villagers in winter.

 

In Maung Nama village tract in Maungdaw Township, the authorities seized about 10 acres of land from the villagers for a rubber plantation. Rubber saplings will be planted with forced labour of nearby villagers, said a village elder in the locality.

 

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Kaladan News

July 14, 2008

 

Prisoners forced to construct Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road

 

Maungdaw, Arakan State: Over 500 prisoners from Buthidaung jail, northern Arakan (Rakhine) State in Burma, have been forced to reconstruct Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road as of July 9, by local Burmese junta authorities.

 

The Chairman of the Township Peace and Development Council of Buthidaung Township issued an order to the jail authorities to reconstruct the Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road with the help of prison labour on July 8.

 

At about 6 am, the prisoners were brought to the work site by cars from the jail. They have to work at work site from 6 am to 10 am in the first phase and from 1 pm to 6 pm thereafter. After 6 pm they are brought back to the jail precincts by vehicles. After having food at 10 am at the work site they are allowed to take rest till 1 pm. Food is sent from the jail and the prisoners work in civilian attire while the policemen stand guard.

 

The Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road was badly damaged along with some bridges due to heavy rain over the last two weeks. It is 16 miles long of which five miles have been totally damaged and vehicles are not able to ply on the road. Passengers are unable to go up and down from Maungdaw Town by car.

 

The damaged bridges on Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road were built in 2004-2005 with three years guarantee with forced labour of local people. It is being rebuilt again in 2008. Wooden logs were collected from villagers in 2007 for construction of bridges.

 

Communication problems on the Maungdaw-Buthidaung road have led to a rise in price of essential commodities in Maungdaw and Buthidaung townships. People are facing difficulties but the authorities are not bothered.

 

It is learnt that the damaged bridges would be temporarily made with wooden logs for vehicles to ply and after the end of the rainy season the authorities would use concrete. 

 

Villagers from both townships are also forced to repair the Maungdaw-Buthidaung Road without any support from the government. The road is a key transportation link between Buthidaung and Maungdaw Townships.

 

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Kaladan News

July 14, 2008

 

SPDC seizes lands from Rohingyas for Natala villagers

 

Maungdaw, Arakan State:  The State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) has been confiscating lands from Rohingya farmers for Natala (model) villagers since the first w eek of this month in Maungdaw Township, said a farmer.  

 

Surveyors of Maungdaw Township with help from Township Peace and Development Council (TPDC) members and Nasaka, or Burma's border security force are surveying the land which is meant to be seized.

 

The authorities surveyed the village tracts of Min Ga Hla Gyi , Naribill, Phur Wut Chaung, Sain Tay Pyin of Maungdaw Township and confiscated some land for Aung Thaya Natala villagers settled in 2004. The Natala villagers of Aung Thaya village are notorious and harass the Rohingya community no end. 

 

Earlier, in 2004, the Natala villagers were provided some land by the authorities after seizing them from Rohingya villagers. Now the Natala villagers are being provided land again after confiscation from Rohingya farmers.

 

Besides, all pastures in Maung Nama village tract in Maungdaw Township were confiscated for Natala villagers by the authorities. As such Rohingya villagers of Maung Nama village have been prevented from grazing cattle in the pastures. Villagers have been facing many difficulties in maintaining their cattle, said a villager.

 

In addition, 10 acres of orchard of Maulana Sayedul Amin of Maung Nama village is to be seized for Natala villagers soon by the authorities. The orchard has mangoes, jackfruit trees and other fruit bearing trees. The present Village Peace and Development Council (VPDC) Chairman of the Rakhine community has been trying to seize this orchard, after the death of the former VPDC Chairman  of the Rakhine community, said a village elder on condition of anonymity.



--
KPN News Team
First News Agency dedicated for Rohingya Media
T: +8801714381110 / +880 181 990 7683 / +8801670311376
E: info@kaladanpress.org / kaladanpress@yahoo.com / kaladanpress@gmail.com
W: www.kaladanpress.org / www.kaladanpress.com

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