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Set up sessions judge’s courts in CHT

Speakers demand at BLAST seminar in Rangamati

Our Correspondent, Rangamati
The Daily Star, Sep 13, 2006

Speakers at seminar here yesterday urged the government to take steps for creation of sessions judge’s courts in the three hill districts as per the Chittagong Hill Tracts Regulation (Amendment) Act-2003, and Section 26 of Nari-O-Shishu Nirjatan Daman Ain-2000 to facilitate judicial activities and help curb crimes.

Litigants and people now suffer a lot now in absence of judicial facilities, they said.

The seminar on ‘Establishing Human Rights in CHT’ was organised by the rangamati unit of Bangladesh Legal Aid Services Trust (BLAST). It was held at the conference room of CHT Regional Council here.

Parbattya Chattagram Jana Sanghati Samity (PCJSS) central leader and CHT Regional Council member Rupayan Dewan, Jummo Refugee Welfare Association Secretary Ushatan Talukder, CHT Mohila Samity President Upendra Lal Chsakma, PCJSS law affairs secretary Madhabi Lata Chakma, Rangamati BLAST Co-ordinator Shaktiman Chakma, advocate Jewel Dewan, civil society members, journalists and representatives spoke at the seminar.

They said the CHT Regulation (amendment) Act-03 provides for constitution of three separate sessions divisions. As per the provision, district judges will act as sessions judge of the respective session division and joint district judge will act as assistant session judge.

The joint district judge try all civil cases as per existing laws and customs in the district concerned. Cases relating to family laws and other customary laws will be tried by the mouzas headmen and circle chief as per provision (Ga)(4) of the Act.

They said thousands of cases are pending in the three hill districts for long and many people are languishing in jails without trial as there is no session judge’s court at the district headquarters. This is violation of human rights, they said.

The Rangamati unit of BLAST in a report said 62 female repression cases were filed in Rangamati during 2003-05. Trial of all the cases are pending due to lack of a Women and Child Repression Prevention Tribunal, it said.

Besides, indigenous people are helpless while their lands are being acquired or leased to outsides. They can not avail legal protection now, they said.

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