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Bangladesh: Government closes down project for human rights defenders 

This is a recording from the Minority Voices conference, held in Budapest in July 2010.In this recording: Sazzad Hussain from Odhikar tells us how the government of Bangladesh tried to close down their project on training human rights defenders. In the framework of this project, parliamentarians, jail authorities, heads of district administration and police, lawyers, local journalists and members of NGOs and civil society...

Activists call for end to violence against the world’s ‘untouchable’ women 

On the United Nations Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, 25th of November, Dalit women activists are urging the world to pay attention to the plight of women subjected to horrific acts of violence because of their caste and gender. While the world is busy praising India’s booming economy and status as ‘the world’s biggest democracy’, Dalit women are subjected...

MEPs: The EU must act now to help end one of the biggest human rights issues in the world  

PRESS RELEASE from The International Dalit Solidarity Network Brussels, March 1, 2011 (IDSN) --- MEPs stated that EU action must be taken to help end caste discrimination, affecting 260 million people worldwide. The statements came during a hearing on caste discrimination in South Asia, at the European Parliament Monday afternoon. This was also the message delivered by Dalit rights advocators at the hearing, who...

Young Journalist Award runner up: A grassroots revolution 

Minority Rights Group International, in March 2011, announced the winner of the Minority Voices Young Journalist Award - a prize for young professionals and student journalists keen to cover issues affecting minorities and indigenous communities in developing countries.The three-member panel of judges, formed both from journalism and development experts, recognised the excellent level of the entries received. In particular the committee named five applicants...

Bangladesh: Rohingya refugees suffer from lack of documentation 

Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees who fled repression in Burma have no protection from abuse , starvation, and detention in Bangladesh because of a lack of documentation, Refugees International highlighted in a recent report. In the report, Bangladesh: The Silent Crisis, Refugees International is urging the international community to work with the Bangladeshi government to register undocumented refugees and improve protection for...

Bangladesh: 'Rohingya – a people without hope', winner of the Minority Voices young Journalist Award  

The English translation of the story below won the Minority Voices Young Journalist Award, a prize awarded by Minority Rights Group (MRG) to young professional and student journalists covering issues affecting minority and indigenous communities in developing countries. Journalist Per Liljas’ entry was described by judges as “outstanding, brilliant and a cut above the rest”. Winners were announced in March and Liljas, who took...

Bangladeshi government blocks EU-funded anti-torture project 

The Bangladeshi government is blocking an EU-funded program aimed at stopping torture, according to Odhikar, a human rights group. Odhikar has become the victim of numerous acts of harassment by the government agencies. The NGO Affairs Bureau (NGOAB), under the Prime Minister’s Office, has kept pending its approval and fund clearance of Odhikar’s project for more than 6 months when this process should not...

South Asia: Dalit women voice concerns at the UN Forum on Minority Issues 

Dalit representatives from India, Nepal and Bangladesh voiced their concerns about effective political participation of Dalit women at the 4th session of the UN Forum on Minority Issues. The thematic focus of the session, which was held in Geneva on 29-30 November 2011, was “Guaranteeing the rights of minority women”. Several Dalit representatives actively participated in the panel discussions and side events of...

Bangladesh: A hard life in the camps for Urdu speaking minority 

In this photo story set in Dhaka, Bangladesh, MRG’s Director of Programmes Shobha Das goes on an eye-opening tour of a camp inhabited by a marginalized Urdu-speaking community. The first of its community members arrived in the 1940s from India, and up to four generations now called the camp home.They face widespread discrimination from mainstream Bengali society, due to being perceived as 'traitors' as...

Bangladesh: Smoke in the hills. A story by Per Liljas, winner of MRG's Young Journalist Award 

Forty years after Bangladesh' liberation war, indigenous communities are still stuck in the same struggleTwelve-year old Dipu Chakma was woken up by the crashing sound when the front door of his family’s hut was kicked in. Five men entered, their faces covered in cloth. Hurriedly, Dipu got up from his bed and ushered his little brother Riku to the back of the hut. Sneaking...

Bangladesh, Chittagong Hill Tracts: We are Indigenous not 'Bengali' 

On 9th July 2011, about 5000 indigenous people attended a rally in Bandarban to protest the fact that the 15th constitutional amendment of Bangladesh terms the country's indigenous population as "Bengali" and demand instead their recognition as “indigenous” in the constitution of Bangladesh....

Bangladesh: An indigenous Jummo girl child is raped and brutally killed by settler Bengali 

On 10th, 12th and 14th May 2012 mass protest rallies and processions were brought out in several places of Rangamati Hill Tracts and Dhaka capital city. The mass processions demanded justice of rape and killing of an indigenous Jummo girl child in Atarakchara Union under the Langudu upazila of Rangamati Hill Tracts.Through the procession, the mass people, indigenous people’s leaders, activists and political leaders...

Burma: International support needed to protect Rohingyas from persecution 

Statement, 14 June 2012 Odhikar is deeply alarmed by rapidly deteriorating sectarian violence in the Rakhine State of western Burma since June 3, 2012. So far the facts and evidence received by Odhikar depicts a grim scenario in which the minority Rohingyas are particularly persecuted and forced to leave their homeland. They are being killed, wounded and their villages burnt and when they try...

Adivasis of Bangladesh: a year of broken promises  

‘My grandfather used to tell me not to go in there,’ the old man points to a wide expanse of grass where Bengali children are playing football, ‘because of the tigers in the forest’. He is a member of the Garo community; one of Bangladesh’s estimated 46 indigenous or ‘Adivasi’ peoples. He is an activist fighting for his people’s ancestral forests in Modhupur, in...

Bangladesh: the decline of a vibrant Bihari craft 

Click on the link below to download a report on Urdu-speaking Banarsi silk weavers of Dhaka, Bangladesh....

Bangladesh: Minority Hindu girls raise their hands  

Plan International's Because I am a Girl campaign launches globally on the first ever International Day of the Girl Child on 11 October 2012.Girls themselves were crucial in the global movement to establish the Day of the Girl, and through their stories, ideas and views Plan came to believe that a day for girls would: bring global focus to the widespread denial of basic...

Bangladesh: Dalits demand adequate housing 

Citizen’s Initiative (Nagorik Uddyog) is an non-governmenal organization based in Dhaka that works to promote the rights of marginalized Dalit communities in Bangaldesh. ‘Still now a large section of population in Bangladesh who are known as Dalits are discriminated in all spheres of social life,’ according to Md. Abdul Basar, a project coordinator at Citizen’s Initiative, ‘even though the Constitution has declared equal rights...

Bangladesh: Religious minorities (Hindu, Christian, Buddhist) must be counted in census if elections are to be fair 

SHAREE is a non-Government organization established in the year 1992 by a group of women. It is managed by women and committed to promote and protect the rights of Religious Minorities & marginalized Dalit communities in Bangladesh.Religious minority people have been declining in Bangladesh over the course of time. But there is another issue of debate - undercounting minorities in the population census.According to...

Bangladesh: 95 percent Dalit cleaners lived in poverty 

Around ninety-five percent of leaners of Natore district lived in a dirty state at the sweepers’ colony due to very low salary of their works.They could not support their family members as well as could not gear up their fate. Even if, they did not send their children to the educational institutions for own interest.There are around 2000 Sweeper members out of around 600...

Bangladesh: MRG visits a Dalit Sweeper colony in Dhaka 

MRG's Programme Assistant, Livia Saccardi, visited Bangladesh to attend the National Dalit Women Rights Conference on 28th July 2012 in Dhaka, organised by MRG partner Nagorik Uddyog (Citizen's Initiative).Dalit women face multiple discriminations, from majority communities and from within their own community. They are discriminated against because of their gender and because of their caste.Dalits are considered “untouchable” and “unclean” because of the jobs they...


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