Chittagong Hill Tracts: Regional council to oversee CHT uplift efforts
The government yesterday decided to delegate the authority to oversee development in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) region to its regional council in line with the peace accord on the highlands.
A meeting of the cabinet committee on the CHT peace accord implementation decided
the move with Local Government and Rural Development and Co-operatives Minister
Abdul Mannan Bhuyian in the chair.
The cabinet committee also decided to arrange employment for the refugees repatriated from India under special consideration. The meeting however did not discuss the land dispute in the hill tracts.
"The regional council is supposed to oversee all development work in the CHT region, as the accord stipulates, but we need to sort out how the regional council would act," Moni Swapan Dewan, deputy minister for the CHT affairs and member of the committee, told The Daily Star last night.
"If the government and the Parbatya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samity (PCJSS) continue informal discussion in a cordial atmosphere, it is possible to settle the problems in the CHT," he added.
"The meeting did not discuss the land dispute, but we will discuss the matter in the next meeting," Swapan told the BBC Bengali Service last night. "We are looking into the land dispute issue so that we can take the right decision."
The committee also decided to send a proposal to the finance ministry seeking
a Tk 15 crore fund to generate employment for the members of PCJSS under a self-employment
"Implementation of the CHT peace accord would prove whether the government is sincere about the peace accord and I hope the government would move in that direction, " Gautam Kumar, member of the PCJSS who was present at the meeting, told the BBC.
Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Moudud Ahmed, Land Minster M Shamsul Islam and PCJSS member Sudha Sindhu Khisha also attended the meeting.