News No. 89/2013, Friday, July 26, 2013
THE ARMY has arrested two Jumma youths in Matiranga in Khagrachari district.
A group of army personnel from Matiranga zone made the arrests at about 1:30pm on Thursday, yesterday.
The arrested Jummas have been identified as Sumanta Tripura, 22, son of Jagadish Tripura of village Rengkhong Para and Kiron Bikash Tripura, 25, son of Manindra Tripura from Washu.
They were picked up from the shop of Nirmal Tripura in Ballyachari Signboar area in Matiranga.
Sumanta Tripura, a former president of Matiranga branch of the Hill Students’ Council, teaches at a UNDP-run primary school in Rengkhong village.
The army handed them over to Guimara police station last night and the police in their turn sent them to Khagrachari jail today after showing them arrested under section 54 of the Criminal Procedure Code, which gives police a power to arrest anyone on mere suspicion.
The UPDF in a statement has condemned the arrest of Sumanta Tripura and Kiran Tripura and demanded their immediate release.
Pradipan Khisha, a UPDF organiser in Khagrachari, termed their arrest as a flagrant violation of human rights and said “We can’t accept the fact that members of the security forces would arrest anyone at will, without giving two hoots about the fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution.”
He urged the government to refrain from using the army as a tool of national repression against the Jumma people and said, “The task of the army is to defend the country from foreign aggression, but what it is doing in the CHT is systematic repression of a segment of the citizenry.”
“This is unjust, inhumane and unconstitutional and we want the government to stop it,” he added.