Welcoming Ban Ki-moon to Bangladesh: Loony musings

November 14, 2011
Wasfia Nazreen
Welcoming Ban Ki-moon to Bangladesh: Loony musings

When the UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon arrived in Dhaka on an official visit, his second to Bangladesh, he must have missed Bangladesh Tourism Board’s gallant advertisement “Smiling Indigenous Women of Bangladesh” in its shiny bright billboard at the international airport’s general lobby. The news stories on his arrival Sunday evening obviously did not highlight...
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Posted in CHT, Politics | 6 Comments »

“I ain’t indigenous” – reflection of a Bengali

July 28, 2011
Wasfia Nazreen
“I ain’t indigenous” – reflection of a Bengali

Once upon a time, the British called us ‘blacks’, and then later the Pakistani Army called us ‘inferior race.’ Time passes, it is 2011. As International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples approaches again this year, Bangladesh is stuck in a quicksand ditch trying to figure out ‘who’ the Adibashis or indigenous of our...
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Posted in CHT | 37 Comments »

Of hippos and endangered indigenous denizens

June 21, 2011
Wasfia Nazreen
Of hippos and endangered indigenous denizens

On 19 June 2011 a national English daily reported that our honourable State Minister for Environment and Forests, Dr Hasan Mahmud, is planning to introduce hippopotami, imported from Africa, into the Kaptai Lake area of Rangamati, in the semi-autonomous region of Chittagong Hill Tracts.
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Posted in CHT, Environment/Climate | 13 Comments »

No god, no refuge, no New Year for the indigenous of Bangladesh

April 26, 2011
Wasfia Nazreen
No god, no refuge, no New Year for the indigenous of Bangladesh

Water drenched, tropical sweat-soaked while celebrating Songkrant festival just north of Chiang Mai, Thailand, my phone started getting clogged with alarming news coming from the Chittagong Hill Tracts. Another arson attack, another settler versus indigenous clash and henceforth more deaths, another authority-backed violent incident in our country, another media outcry that doesn’t tell all the...
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Posted in Human Rights | 24 Comments »

Including the excluded

November 6, 2010
Devasish Roy Wangza
Including the excluded

The constitution of a country is meant to serve several purposes: (i) it should articulate and elaborate the fundamental principles of the policy of the state; (ii) these principles should be organic in nature so that they provide a framework for enabling laws, policies and programmes that may be adopted and refined, from time...
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Posted in Human Rights | 4 Comments »

Sex workers and our moral police

October 13, 2010
Wasfia Nazreen
Sex workers and our moral police

On August, our Election Commission — in an announcement that sounded too good to be true — had recognised the title of sex workers to be added to our National ID cards. That is, along with journalists, nurses, tailors, priests and many other existing professions, sex workers were legally accepted in the central database...
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Posted in Human Rights | 20 Comments »

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