Mokter Hossain Mondal: “Three times we have managed to escape death, lost everything; lands, homes,properties fled into Bangladesh for life . But we were not allowed to take refuge there. Then we entered into India and wandered city to city , state to state ; from Delhi to Kashmir, Kashmir to Rajasthan. Roaming to and fro now we arrived here. Sir please don’t send us back to our homeland . Have pity on us, if not, kill us here, ” a Rohingya refugee expressed his deep concern in a tone of disappointment with pain and agony.
Since long many Rohingya refugees have been living here with the identity card of the immigrants issued to them by United Nations. But still many of them are out of shelter. They roam about here and there,one state to another state. Few days ago an NGO took effort for their settlement and built eight homes for these people at Hardah village in Ghutiari Sharif near Baruipur police station . Now six Rohingya men and six women including ten children live here. Before they came here lived in another state of the country.
Inspite of being poor Hossain Gazi ,a social and human rights activist and leader offered his own inherited land for the settlement of these homeless immigrants. Speaking to them, it seems to me that it is only to maintain a bodily existence they are striving and fleeing here and there from place to place. Reportedly one Rohingya who spoke to TDN World said, ” There we have survived five riots. If someone becomes leader,he is targeted and killed. Muslim and Hindu Rohingya are not being allowed to go to schools. And if you want to do so, you have to maintain a secrecy. If someone manages to attain a little bit of education , he is killed .”
“If you are asked to go back to your own country what you will do? ” in reply they said to TDN World, ” No, we no longer want to be there , and if we are forced to be back , we will commit suicide lying in the train line. “
Momina Akhtar is one of the Rohingya refugees , an inhabitant of Nomita in Myanmar , inherited twenty-five bighas of land , had five brothers, three of them are now in India and two others are in Bangladesh’s Teknaf. She knows not actually where they are now and how they are living . Many Rohingya said they lost all contacts with their relatives and friends. Even they don’t know whether they are alive or dead .
” But how did they manage to reach in India ? ” , Abdus Subhan, a 28 years old youth who was a resident of Myanmar’s Mamra village under Ikaf police station , said to TDN Bangla, ” To escape death we fled from there to Teknaf and then moved to Kolkata and Delhi . And again we returned here. In Myanmar we have left nothing; houses, files and documents were burned into ashes.” Traces of their grave misery are evident in their appearances . The children are out of schools . Mohammed Irfan, a three and half year old child, Muhammed Abdur Rahman a six years old boy and like them many children are out of school. ” We are supplying them rice and potatoes to cook. But please do something for their children’s education ,” local people urged TDN World.
Ghazi Hossain who is found to be involved with a number of social activities and raising voice in many human right issues, offered these Rohingya a shelter on his own effort beside his own small hut. Many Muslim organisations also came forward to stand by these Rohingya peoples . Few days ago, Muhammad Qamruzzaman , state president of Minority Youth Federation , came here along with Ali Akbar , Abdul Momin and others , offered monetary aid to build a house for them. Qamruzzam said , ” Further I will stand by these persecuted refugees .” After arrival of the Rohingya refugees in Ghutiarisharif people came forward voluntarily to help and cooperate with them openhandedly . Villagers claimed that local administration had come there, approached the refugees and took photos and videos.
Various human rights organisations however, accused of the Hindutva outfits for abetting common people with misgivings to oppose this settlement of the Rohingya refugees . Now these people of Myanmar are able to speak a bit in Hindi. Many of them can speak in Bengali but can’t write. Forgetting one language they are trying to learn another language, forgetting one broken-home building another.
” But why these Rohingya people are persecuted so much ?”, twenty-five year’s old Amanullah replied shortly, ” we are Day labourers we know nothing of why all these are happening.”
In the piercing cold of winter women and children are badly needed warm clothes as well as foods. Local people are employing the Rohingya men for various works in return they are being paid. But as their families and dreams have been scattered into pieces will they ever be able to return to the mainstream of life regaining the state of normalcy ? In this vast world will they be allowed to live as human beings ? Will our India be able to embrace these Bengali Rohingya refugees heartily by allowing them to live here as she did with crores of other immigrants in the past ? Questions are buzzing.
Keeping aside all the differences of opinion, the world should think over the plight of these Rohingya who in fear of oppression, rape and abuse fled into countries , if not for them, at least keeping in mind of the innocent children they have with them. Hope, the Rohingya have this much right to ask for to the humankind.