Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan said the Armed Police Battalion (APBn) has been formed in three districts of Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) for safety and security of people living there.
As per the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) Peace Accord, APBn was being deployed in areas where army had left the camps, he said.
Inspector General of Police Benazir Ahmed gave the welcome speech.
The home minister said, “Our journey started here through APBn. We will not allow any extortion in Bangladesh. We will not allow any bloodshed. We have been able to give a safe Bangladesh to the people by suppressing militancy and terrorism; Why will there be bloodshed in these three districts?”
Home Minister said the people of the region are very peaceful. Identify the terrorists and inform police about the terrorists. Police will be by your side. Terrorists will be brought to book; they must be punished according to the law.” He said “The three districts will move forward in the same way as the country is moving forward. Prime Minister has paid full attention to these three districts.”
Chittagong Hill Tracts Affairs Minister Bir Bahadur Ushwe Sing called upon all to come forward for maintaining peace and development in the three hill districts.
Home Ministry Public Security Division Senior Secretary Md Akhter Hossain said that APBn is being deployed in the 238 camps of the Bangladesh Army which have been withdrawn as per the peace accord. APBn will play an effective role in ensuring the safety and development of the people in the hilly areas.
Referring to the trial of political assassinations, the IGP said that many political assassinations have taken place in the area. But no one came forward to testify in the case. He said every witness would be provided security if required.
Home Minister laid the foundation stone of APBn’s DIG’s office, 18 APBn Rangamati, 19 APBn Bandarban and 20 APBn Khagrachhari headquarters, 18 APBn’s 18 Atharmile Camp, 19 APBn’s Rubber Garden Camp and 20 APBn’s Puraton Pankhimora Camp.
Chittagong Hill Tracts Affairs Minister Bir Bahadur Ushwe Sing, Chairman of Task Force on Rehabilitation of India-returnee Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons Kujendra Lal Tripura, Chairman of Parliamentary Standing Committee on Food Dipankar Talukder, Reserved women’s seat-9 MP Basanti Chakma, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of the 24th Infantry Division Major General Md Saiful Abedin, Director General (DG) of Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) Chowdhury Abdullah Al-Mamun, Chittagong Divisional Commissioner Md Ashraf Uddin, chief of Bomang Circle U Cha Prue Chowdhury, chief of Mong Circle Saching Prue Chowdhury and chief of Chakma Circle barrister Raja Devashis Roy were present as special guests.
Military and civilian officials including people's representatives, traders and headmen were present on the occasion.
Mentionable that as a result of the timely decision of the government in 1997, 238 camps of Bangladesh Army were withdrawn from the three hill districts in the light of the historic peace accord. Due to its remote hilly terrain, the area is being used as a drug route along with terrorist activities.
It is difficult for the Rangamati, Bandarban and Khagrachhari Hill district police alone to maintain law and order in the area.
In the context of the government’s decision, the formation of APBn in the three hill districts will make it easier to ensure law and order, control of terrorist activities and overall security of the people in the hill areas.