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Changing Life in a Murung Village (Part 2 of 6)

March 21, 2008

Recently, our reporter visited Kapru Para in Bandarban to investigate the impact of outside interaction on the life of Murung nationality, the third largest ethnic group in Chittagong Hill Tracts. We are releasing the findings in a series of photographic expositions. Please find attached the second of the six-picture series.

Photo 2 of 6:
Nowadays Murung girls and women wear western dresses alongside their traditional ones. The males also no longer grow long hair. Most of the Murungs have converted to Christianity. Previously, they were either Buddhist or followers of a homegrown faith called Krama. The new religion has begun to change their lifestyle thanks to the influence of the Christian NGOs.

But the Murungs are still lagging far behind in education. One of the causes for this scenario is language problem. The Murungs cannot and do not communicate in Bangla. In Kapru Para, there are two churches and one primary school established by Mrochet, a local NGO.

Neither the government, nor the local representative bodies takes care of the needs and interests of the Murung people. The Regional Council has only one seat for Tanchangyas and Murungs combined. It is now held by Nilu Tanchangya. The Murungs allege that he has never enquired about their well being, nor visited any of their villages. Around 80 percent of the Murungs did not even hear his name.

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