By Rohingya Mirror | December 21, 2016
Maungdaw — On the pretext of erection of houses without official permission(s), Myanmar’s Border Guard Police (BGP) have indulged in demolishing at least 250 Rohingya houses, shops and religious structures across the Maungdaw Township in the recent weeks, reliable sources in Maungdaw reported.
The houses and shops being destroyed in the rural villages are not modern buildings that require officials’ permission(s) but traditional country-type structures built of bamboos and woods and covered with ‘Nipa Palm Leaves.’ These widespread destructions of homes are now seen among the locals as yet another attempt of cleansing their (i.e. Rohingya) population through systematic displacement of the people.
Mostly, the BGP have forced the Rohingya villagers to dismantle their own houses and shops at gun-points or by means of using threats of imprisonment. In the occasions when the locals resisted, the BGP themselves have demolished many homes.
“Even some 30-year-old homes were destroyed. The BGP ordered the villagers to destroy the homes simply alleging that they were erected without permission and not included in the NaSaKa (the former Border Security Forces and the predecessors of the BGP) Housing Map. But the people here didn’t want to demolish their own homes as they were worried for their children in this winter. However, the BGP started beating the villagers and demolishing their homes,” said an elder local, while speaking to Rohingya Vision TV.
[Also read: Rohingya Homes Demolished in Southern Maungdaw]
To date, the following numbers of houses, shops or religious structures have been demolished across the Maungdaw Township.
1) 27 houses and shops at the village of ‘PaNyaungPinGyi’ locally known as ‘DoungHali’
2) 45 houses and shops at the village of ‘Goduthara’
3) 10 houses and 1 Religious School at the village of ‘Baaggona ‘
4) 10 houses at the village of ‘PanTawPyi’n locally known as ‘LalBoinna’
5) Some unidentified numbers of houses at the village of ‘AlayThanKyaw’ locally known as ‘Haishshurata’ and its hamlet, Kanpoo.
And in northern Maungdaw, the following numbers of houses have been demolished.
6) 5 houses at the village of ‘PaungZar’
7) More than 150 houses in the BGP Region (1) around ‘Khamauk Seik (Foira Bazaar)’ area and in ‘TaungPyo LatWa’i sub-township.
Not only in Maungdaw Township, but at the following villages in the Buthidaung Township too, the BGP have destroyed numbers of houses and ordered the locals to destroy even more.
Some houses were destroyed on the pretext that they didn’t make entries in the housing maps of the NaSaKa despite building them with the permission of the township administration.
For a Rohingya to build a house in rural areas regardless of poor or rich, they have to take permissions not only from the administrations (both village administration and township administration) but also from the BGP and sometimes from Special Branch Police (SB) and Defense Security Service (Sarapha), which cost them more than building a house itself.
However, the same rules are not applied for the Rakhine communities in the rural areas.
[Edited by M.S. Anwar]
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