I called them “sir” and “brother” and pleaded with them to save us: Chitra Chakma
News No. 94/2011, April 22, 2011
Chitra Chakma, 22, wife of Sonamuni Chakma of village Joy Kumar Karbari Para, Dighinala, was one of the victims of the 17 April communal attack in Ramgarh, Manikchari and Guimara. She, along with her husband, was on her way back home when their Shanti Paribahan bus came under attack in Jaliapara.
She talked to chtnews.com about her experience of those agonizing moments. We reproduce her interview below:
My husband and I had gone to Chittagong. On our way back we caught in the incident at Jaliapara. The Bengalis smashed the windows of our bus. They also beat some Chakma boys who were seated in the front rows. I lost my consciousness when I saw this scene. I gained my consciousness only when water was poured on to my head.
The other passengers of the bus hid me under the seats of the bus. This was how I was saved for that moment.
When we were hiding under the seats, all other passengers got off the bus. There was no hope that we would be alive. We wanted to run away, but could not. We stayed hidden under the seats.
Soon after, four more Bengalis came to us. They tried to drag me away, I think, to assault me sexually. They took out knives and were threatening to kill us.
At this time, I was screaming with all my force. When they heard me scream, the army and police came to me. I called them “sir” and “brother” and pleaded with them to save us.
I said: “We are in a serious danger. There are none except you who can save us. You are like God for us. It is you who can save us. I am a woman. Please save me.”
But even after that, the army and police did not help us. The policemen would come, see us and then go away.
Later, section 144 was imposed and the situation became a bit normal. At about 8pm, we were able to come back from there.