Communal attack on Jumma villages by Bengali settlers in Matiranga-Taindong of Khagrachari district

On 3 August 2013 the Bengali settlers conducted a massive communal attack on Jumma villages under Taindong union of Matiranga upazila in Khagrachari district. In this attack, around 36 houses of 6 villages namely Sorbeswar Para, Bandarshing Para (Bhagaban Tila), Baga Para, Monudas Para, Nuya Para (Monudas Para) and Talukdar Para including a house of Buddhist temple were burnt to ashes and at least 261 houses belonging to Jumma villages were looted and vandalised by the Bengali settlers.

In this attack, around 4,500 Jumma villagers of 902 families of 13 villages were affected. Of them, approximately 2,000 Jumma villagers of 400 families fled into the Indian border. Besides, 380 families of indigenous Tripura community of Purabari, Headman Para, Laifu Kumar Karbari Para and Krishna Doyal Karbari Para under Taindong union fled into the neighbour Panchari upazila in Khagrachari district.

At least 12 people of Baga Para and Sorbeswar Para were brutally beaten by the Bengali settlers. Among them, Amrita Chakma s/o Mahendra Lal Chakma from Bandarshing Para, Shukkamoni Chakma s/o Purnabahu Chakma from Bandarshing Para and Kala Kazi Chakma s/o late Joliya Chakma from Baga Para were chopped. Some were beaten snatching them from BGB by Bengali settlers.

The Bengali settlers made this attack alleging that a motor bike driver named Md. Kamal Hossain (30) was kidnapped by tribal miscreants from Bandarshing Para of Taindong union on that day around 11:00 am. The attack started at around 1:30 pm and lasted in the evening at 6:00 pm.

A total loss caused by the arson, looting and destruction of houses has been estimated to be 20 million in BDT or US $ 256,410. Ashamoni Chakma, a 2-month old daughter of Sukkamoni Chakma of Bandarshing Para died of pneumonia at Khagrachari general hospital on 10 August 2013 as Ashamoni Chakma drenched in the rain during their returning home on 4 August from ‘no man’s land’ of Indian territory which developed pneumonia.

Communal tension and fears have been persisting at Taindong area under Matiranga upazila for long time. Alleging extortion and kidnapping by tribal miscreants, Bengali settlers have been trying to attack on Jumma villages.

Very recently on 31 July 2013 at mid-night, Bengali settlers of Taindong area spread communal tension and shouted provocative slogans against Jumma people through mike from mosque that tribal terrorists had came to attack and asked Bengali settlers to wake up to prevent the terrorists. At that time, hundreds of Bengali settlers gathered at different places including Taindong bazaar under Taindong union and held marches shouting communal slogans.

This caused tremendous fears among Jumma villagers of six villages namely Baga Para, Headman Para, Tonga Mahajan Para, Sorbeswar Para, Rambabudeva and Pura Bari and around 250 families of these villages fled their respective villages. Some of the Jumma villagers crossed the Bangladesh-India Border and some took shelter at the jungle of remote areas of Taindong union. However, they returned to their village following a security guarantee by the BGB.

Matiranga-Taindong area has been subject to six waves of attacks since 1961 and each incident has forced them for relocation and made them progressively poorer. In 1960s ratio of indigenous Jumma people and non-indigenous Bengali people in the Matiranga upazila was 85% and 15% respectively, which got changed to 10% and 90% in 2013. The effective resolution of disputes over land including past, present and future, would contribute more to sustainable peace and development in the CHT than any other provisions of the Accord.

Assurance of security of life and property by CHT minister and return of Jumma villagers:

On 4 August 2013 State Minister for CHT Affairs Ministry Mr. Dipankar Talukdar, chairman of the Khagrachari Hill District Council Mr. Kujendra Lal Tripura, Guimara sector commander of Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) Mr. Imdadul Haque and Deputy Commissioner of Khagrachari district Mr. Masud Karim visited the Taindong area of Matiranga upazila. They went to the border side and requested Jumma villagers to return home. Around 2,000 Jumma villagers, who crossed border for security reason, agreed to return to their villages following a security guarantee by Dipankar Talukdar and Kujendra Lal Tripura. State Minister also promised them to provide adequate compensation for damages.


It is reported that Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) provided 25 kg of rice, 2 kg of flattened rice and 250 gm of molasses to each family whose houses were burnt to ashes. BGB distributed 17 kg of rice, 1 kg of salt, 1 litre of soybean and 500 gm of sugar for each family. 10 kg of rice, 1 gamcha, 1 lungi and 1 pachra for each family were provided by Taindong Union Council. Army provided a total of 31 pieces of tent sheet and 100 lungies. Bangladesh Red Crescent also provided the victim families with lentil, oil, dry food and other necessities and kitchen utensils. On 8 September 2013 Dr. Gowher Rizvi, advisor on International Affairs to the Prime Minister and Mr. Naba Bikram Kishore Tripura along with UNDP representatives visited the spot and distributed relief (chiefly kitchen utensils) for 902 affected families.

Besides, the government, non-government organisations, civil society members and general public came forward with financial support for the Taindong victims. The Bangladesh Government provided the victim families of arson attack with BDT 16,500 each and the families that had been looted were provided with BDT 3,500 each family. The Citizens Committee for Humanitarian Support for Matiranga Indigenous Victims 2013 provided the victims with BDT 300,000 during the first visit to the spot on 24-26 August 2013 and nearly BDT 779,884 including BDT 500,000 of Manusher Jonno Foundation and taka 140,000 Kapaeeng Foundation during second visit on 26-27 September 2013. The CHT Jumma Refugee Welfare Association provided the villagers with BDT 200,000. Furthermore, the CHT Samiti and general public also made financial contributions for the victim of indigenous villagers of Taindong.

Case filed:

A resident of Baga Para named Anil Baran Chakma (38) s/o late Dhananjoy Chakma, who was victim of this attack, filed a case against 100-150 people, including following 30 persons with Matiranga police station in this connection on 5 August 2013-
1) Md. Sirajul Islam (50) (former UP chairman) s/o late Abdul Aziz of Uttor Achalong;
2) Md. Kamal Hossain (35) s/o Md. Mokhlesur Rahman of Bottoli;
3) Md. Abed Ali Member (55) s/o late Akmot Ali of Bottoli;
4) Qamrul Hasan alias Aman (35) s/o late Osman Ali of Vaigya Para;
5) Md. Abu Taher (28) s/o Mobarak Hosen of Bottoli;
6) Amir Hosen Tailor s/o unknown of Bottoli;
7) Nayeb Ali s/o Kadim Ali of Bottoli;
8) Md. Monir Hosen s/o Chan Mian of Noapara;
9) Jamal (35) s/o unknown of Bottoli;
10) Shafiq (28) s/o Suruj Mian of Bottoli;
11) Abul Kashem (48) (former member) s/o unknown of Bottoli;
12) Humayun Kabir s/o late Bablu Mian of Noapara;
13) Malek alias Lamba Malek (35) s/o unknown of Bottoli Purbopara;
14) Chandmian Pisi (50) s/o unknown of Bottoli Purbopara;
15) Idhon Sordar s/o unknown of Tanakka Para;
16) Md. Selim s/o Korban Ali of Bottoli Purbopara;
17) Rubel (24) s/o Moktar Ali of Tanakka Para;
18) Zahir (26) s/o Moktar Ali of Tanakka Para;
19) Md. Amir Hosen (22) s/o Sultan of Tanakka Para;
20) Jahar Ali (20) s/o of Taju Mian of Tanakka Para;
21) Fajar Ali (18) s/o Taju Mian of Tanakka Para;
22) Md. Manir (30) s/o late Moqbul Hosen of Bottoli Purbopara;
23) Alamgir (26) s/o late Moqbul Hosen of Bottoli Purbopara;
24) Aziz (45) s/o Kader Mian of Bottoli Purbopara;
25) Hamid (40) s/o Kader Mian of Bottoli Purbopara;
26) Rubel (18) s/o Tajul Islam of Tanakka Para;
27) Suman (22) s/o Patwari of Tanakka Para;
28) Jasim (27) s/o Tokan Ali of Tanakka Para;
29) Zahir (20) s/o Alkus Ali of Bottoli;
30) Kabir (22) s/o Alkus Ali of Bottoli;

Police arrested 13 persons including following persons charging with attack, looting and arson-
1) Md. Kamal Hossain (35) s/o Mokhlesur Rahman of Bottoli bazaar (who spread rumour);
2) Md. Abed Ali Member (55) s/o late late Akmat Ali of Bottoli village;
3) Kamrul Hassan alias Aman (35) s/o late Osman Ali of Bhagya Para;
4) Abu Taher (28) s/o Mobarak Hossain of Bottoli village;
5) Md. Jahangir Alam Sujan (24) s/o Shahjahan and Jahanara Begum;
6) Md. Amir Hossain (20) s/o Mafiz Mian and Monowara Begum of Bottoli village;
7) Md. Monir Hossain (25) s/o Mafiz Mian and Monowara Begum of Bottoli village;
8) Md. Mehedi Hassan, a primary school teacher and leader of Bengali Student Council;
9) An adolescent of Bengali settler.

Md. Moinuddin Khan, Officer-in-Charge (OC) of Matiranga police station produced arrested persons mentioned above before Chief Judicial Magistrate court on 6 August 2013. The arrested persons were charged with attack, arson and looting under section 143/ 147/ 148/ 149/ 447/ 448/ 323/ 324/ 325/ 436/ 427/ 379/ 380/ 506 of Bangladesh Panel Code (BPC). It is learnt that two arrested namely Mehedi Hassan (leader of Bengali Student Council) and adolescent settler were released on bail.


On 4 August 2013 the Chittagong Hill Tracts Citizens’ Committee and International Chittagong Hill Tracts Commission protested against this heinous attack. It demanded judicial inquiry into the incident and adequate compensation to the affected Jumma families.

On 5 August 2013, the International Chittagong Hill Tracts Commission (CHTC) condemned the attack on the homes of indigenous peoples in Matiranga and the continuous failure of the Government of Bangladesh in protecting the lives and livelihoods of the indigenous peoples of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT). The CHTC asked for prompt action by Government, in accordance with its national and international human rights responsibilities.

On 5 August, 2013, the American Jumma Council (AJC)-USA held a protest demonstration against the violent incident in front of the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

On 5 August 2013 the PCJSS organised human chain in Rangamati and Bandarban district headquarters protesting massive communal attack, arson and looting on Jumma villages by Bengali settlers in Taindong-Matiranga area and passive roles of government authorities and submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister demanding adequate compensation and rehabilitation to the affected Jumma families, judicial inquiry into the attack and exemplary punishment to those Bengali settlers involved with this violent incident.

On 5 August 2013 the UPDF enforced a dawn-to-dusk road blockade in Khagrachari district protesting against the attack. During the blockade programme, the Bengali settlers ransacked 3 Jumma shops at Toichakma in Ramgarh upazila, while the army arrested a Jumma youth in Matiranga.

On 18 August 2013 Parbatya Bhikkhu Sangha organised human chain at Khagrachari district headquarters. They demanded to build vandalized Buddhist temple and to provide adequate compensation and rehabilitation and security of life and property to the affected Jumma villagers. On the other, on 19 August 2013, Jumma migrants in South Korea organised demonstration in front of Bangladesh Embassy in Seoul.

On 31 August 2013 the Citizen Committee for Humanitarian Support for Matiranga Indigenous Victims 2013 organised the press conference at Dhaka Reporters Unity after visiting the affected areas. At a press conference, they demanded exemplary punishments for the attackers and proper sufficient compensations and rehabilitations of the affected families. They also demanded the safety of the affected indigenous villagers and implementation of the Chittagong Hill Tracts Accord of 1997. On 24-26 August 2013 a 20-member team of the Citizens Committee led by Tarek Ali, Numan Ahmed Khan and Rajib Mir visited the spot.

The houses of Jumma villages burnt to ashes: Total- 35
(1) Sorbewar Para- 18 houses
(2) Bandarshing Para (Bhagaban Tila)- 3 houses
(3) Baga Para- 11 houses
(4) Talukdar Para- 3 houses

The Buddhist temples looted and ransacked: Total- 2 houses
(1) Sorbeswar Para Janashakti Bouddha Bihara
(2) Monudas Para Bouddha Bihara

Jumma villagers beaten and wounded: Total- 12
1. Amrita Chakma (29) s/o Mahendra Lal Chakma of Bandarshong Para
2. Kala Kazi Chakma (36) s/o Jaliya Mohan Chakma of Baga Para
3. Bakul Kanti Chakma (44) s/o Brajendra Lal Chakma of Baga Para
4. Bishwaketu Chakma (45) s/o Banshi Mohan Chakma of Baga Para
5. Sachilmoy Chakma (30) s/o Ratnakar Chakma of Baga Para
6. Jiban Bikash Chakma (25) s/o Madan Mohan Chakma of Baga Para
7. Meriya Chakma (50) s/o Swara Mohan Chakma of Baga Para
8. Fani Bhushan Chakma (44) s/o Surendra Lal Chakma of Baga Para
9. Shukka Moni Chakma (Shukra) (30) s/o late Purna Bahu Chakma of Bandarshing Para
10. Chameya Chakma (30) s/o Rong Moni Chakma of Baga Para
11. Binoy Chakma (52) s/o late Birendra Lal Chakma of Baga Para
12. Anil Kanti Chakma (25) s/o late Mandri Mohan Chakma of Baga Para.
N.B. A mobile phone and taka 7,220 from Amrita Chakma and a mobile phone from Bakul Kanti Chakma, project chairman of India-returnee refugee have been seized.

List of affected indigenous families in Taindong Union and Tabalchari Union under Matiranga District:
Taindong Union-
1 Bhagaban Tilla- 52 families
2 Bandarasing Para- 28 families
3 Baga Para- 138 families
4 Sarbeswar Para- 70 families
5 Manodas Para- 59 families
6 Achalong Marma Para- 70 families
7 Krishna Dayal Para- 07 families
8 Tanga Mahajan Para- 43 families
9 Batti Tilla- 23 families
10 Headman Para- 143 families
11 Porabari Para- 59 families
12 Talukder Para- 46 families
Tabalchari Union-
13 Laifu Karbari Para- 168 families
Total 902 (Nine Hundred and Two) Families