News No. 86/2011, April 20, 2011
Pairei Marma, 37, son of late Khilu Aung Marma, village Uttor Shonkhola Para, Ramgarh
Mr. Marma is an eyewitness to and a victim of the communal attack on Jumma villages by Bengali settlers on 17 April. His house along with all his belongings has been burnt to ashes. A returnee Jumma refugee, he is yet to get his land back.
chtnews.com interviewed him by mobile phone after the incident. We excerpt:
It was about 11:30am. Suddenly, I saw 60 – 70 settlers from Baro Pilak coming towards our village. There were army men behind them. The army were in 3 pick-up vans.
The settlers came and began to set fire to our houses.
They could not have burnt down so many houses if they had not been backed by army.
The distance between Shonkhola Para and Baro Pilak is about one kilometer. I could recognize some of the attackers.
I saw Joinal PC of VDP, Mahbub, Nuru Hossain, Mostafa and Shahajahan Gaji among them.
All my belongings have been burnt down. I had ginger and turmeric and about 250 Ari or about 4,000 kgs of unhusked rice. The total loss in terms of money amounts to about Taka 500,000 ($ 7,142).