Myanmar’s 8 lakh minorities vs. Bangladesh’s 8 lakh minorities: Is swap possible?


Ethnic minorities in Bangladesh who look like those of Bamars or Mongoloits with their snub nose amount to 8 lakh. Coincidentally the ethnic minorities in Myanmar who look like those of Bangladeshis with their complexion and sharp nose amount to 8 lakh. The United Nations claims ethnic minorities in Myanmar to be the most persecuted minorities in the world not the Bangladeshi ethnic minorities (Magh, Chakma, Murang, Santal, Garo and others). Here in Bangladesh tribal people don’t have to struggle against striking out their status as ethnic minorities but the Rohingyas have to. Chittagong Hill Tract minorities are trying to get the indigenous priority which Bomang Raja Aung Shu Pro Chowdhury said they were not indigenous people in CHT. They threaten struggle against the majorities in Bangladesh as they enjoy different quota in education, job and other sectors. Rather they had been living here since 17th century whereas Rohingyas have been living in in Arakan state of Myanmar for centuries in impoverished state. Even 1982 citizen law deprived them of citizenship. If expulsion of minorities go on in the countries all over the world there will be countries left based only on religions. All the Christians will migrate to predominantly Christian countries and 160 crore (23pc) Muslims only in 57 Muslim countries and in this way Hindus in India and Nepal. But Jews will have left only to migrate to Israel when Buddhists in China, Japan, Cambodia, Thailand Myanmar and other predominantly Buddhist countries. New polarisation on the basis of religious beliefs will take place. If such massive migration happens other than four major religions (Buddhist, Christians, Muslims and Hindus) where will minor religions (Shikh Jaina, Shintu and hundreds of minorities) migrate to live in because they have no country to call their own. They will have no state and thus they won’t exist?
Is swap 8-lakh Rohingyas of Arakan with 8-lakh ethnic minorities or tribal people or khudra nritattik jatigoshthi in Bangladesh possible. Will the 134 other ethnic minorities including Karens leave Myanmar? That will incur the greatest pandemonium on the problem-plagued planet. Will the Bangladeshi ethnic minorities go there to Myanmar to settle with the Rakhaine Buddhists?
Look at the ugly face of Western democracy ritually practiced in India which gloatingly claims to be the greatest democracy. Look at the varying attitudes of 17.7-crore Muslim rich India, 8-crore Muslim rich Egypt, 7.47-crore Muslim rich Turkey, 7.48-crore Muslim rich Iran and 14.86-crore Muslim rich Bangladesh towards sectarian clashes in Myanmar and India. One Raja Academy organised a demonstration on the Azad ground in Mumbai in protest against atrocities on Rohingya Muslims and Muslims of Assam. Fifty thousand people gathered there but outsider goons attacked the protest rally under-cover, killing two others. Indian authorities couldn’t condemn the killings of Muslims in Assam and Myanmar let alone ensuring the right to protest on the Azad ground in Mumbai.
In the wake latest spate of killing in Rakhaine state at long last Egypt, Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia have come up to call the killing massacre of Rohingyas. Human Rights Watch issued statement saying that Myanmar forces join the Rakhaine Buddhist radicals to kill, torture, intimidate, use excessive force on the ethnic minority Rohingya to leave their motherland.

The terms ‘minority’ is very a sensitive and thought-provoking. It can be cashed and politicized particularly in developing countries. The ‘minority card’ is cashed by many local as well as the international communities. In the first place the word ‘minority’ suggests a feeling, an idea of small religious groups apart from its main meaning. According to Oxford Advanced Learners Dictionary minority means ‘the smaller part of a group; less than half of the people or things in a large group’. Quite opposite of that is the term ‘majority’ which denotes ‘the largest part of a group of people or things’. Those who speak or work or go against the majority are minorities irrespective of their cast, creed and society.
But the term has got many other dimensions, denotations and connotations. The section of people who protest and demonstrate against any injustice, disparity, unjust distribution of world wealth, plundering of the poor can be termed as minority. Those who speak the truth is the real minority in an office, family, and in the state. A truthful minority essentially should have friends. But virtually on earth only a truthful befriends a truthful, an outspoken befriends an outspoken and an opportunist befriends an opportunist. Majority of the people are never outspoken. In the face of torture, intimidation and all sorts of human rights abuse the minorities migrate from the countries of their own to other. They become homeless, jobless and a small part of the uncompromising and poor minorities eventually turn into gypsies — Bedey, Roma, etc. These dissents look for political asylum, immigration in third country to escape arrest, jail, majority wrath, punishment back at home country.

Rohingyas, the most persecuted minority in the world, are facing discrimination, summary trial, rape, deprivation of rights to own their ancestral land, giving birth to baby and total ethnic cleansing. Rohingyas, mostly poor villagers of Sittwe having almost no access to education, treatment are deprived of most of the civic amenities as they are Muslim in religion and speak Bangla. Human right is such a term which is not applicable to them. Myanmar junta has apparently turned into an ethnic-cleansing rogue ruler. National League for Democracy leader Aung Sun Suu Kyi, like many other capitalists, has no strong say about the minority persecution in Myanmar. As a populist and an apparent capitalist she didn’t want to hurt the sentiment of Buddhist nationalists back at home. But she should know that once she was a political minority for raising voice against junta govt and the Swedish Nobel Academy had awarded her Nobel Peace Prize without any vision. There is food for her thought. This academy is the part of the Establishment.
The Establishment
The people in a society or a profession who have influence and power and who usually do not support change are the pro-Establishment. They can also be termed pro-empire. The people who work for change are anti-Establishment. The western hegemony is the establishment with its several thousand nuke warheads, army, universities giving PhD, Breton-Woods Institutes — World Bank, IMF. Builderberg Group, Rockefeller Foundation, Ford Foundation and other think-tanks, international awards — Booker, Pulitzer, Nobel, etc — are the buttresses of the global empire of the majorities. Even the UN is sometimes used by its funders to attain their goal. Dissent voices who oppose the present day regimes, their media, system, interests are the anti-Establishment. Awards are not for them except a few those which are used given to check the leftists as well as Islamists.
Cultural Minority
According to latest CIA fact-sheet there are as many as 20000 television channels in the world. Most of these channels are financed by multinational and local corporations who rule the world by proxy and sometimes directly. To run such one TV channel you need as much as one crore taka in Bangladeshi currency. Most of them are entertainment channels, some of them are infotainment and a few of them are educational as well as anti-establishment. The prime target of the low-cost entertainment industry is to retain the capitalist systems. Only Allah knows how many radios work in the whole world. Al Jazeera is a television channel of the minorities as the US authorities requested the Qatar not to allow operating the channel from its own land. On top of that for airing news of the atrocities inflicted on the Iraqis America wanted to bomb to blow off the news channel with its war correspondent Rageh Omar. The channel revolted against pro-American ‘embedded journalism’— news based on US soldiers’ briefing in an army camp. Bangladeshi TV channels like CSB, Channel One were shut and reporters like Sagar-Runi of Masranga TV and ATN Bangla, Belal of Sangram and Jamal Uddin of Jessore-based daily Gramar Kagoj among 22 others were killed since independence of Bangladesh in 1971.

Religious minority
A small number of practicing Muslims are minority when a large number of them are non-practicing, supporting nationalism or socialism or secularism. The Establishment chooses the secularists or nationalists Muslim instead of Islam practicing mass. A small number of practicing Jews are minority when a large number of them are not practicing the tenets or teachings of their respective prophet Moses (A) and his religion fervently. Noam Chomosky, Uri Avnery, Neturei Karta among the Jews who are real Jewish minority. Real Jews are those who are anti-Zionists as Neturei Karta thinks. The same line is toed among others by Mike Cohen, Stephen and Hillary Rose, John Docker, Jean-Marc Levy-Leblond from France and Lawrence Davidson from the US. Eva Jablonka, Ilan Pappe and Tanya Reinhart, Mona Baker and Sue Blackwell, historian Norman Finkelstein, French Holocaust denier Robert Faurisson, Joel Kovel, Tony Judt and Norton Mezvinsky are a handful of Jewish minorities who are deadly against apartheid activities of Israel.
The Christians, who are highly critical of policy decisions particularly the foreign policies regarding wars on countries, belong to minority group as mass people of Christian community toe the lines of their warmonger rulers. These Christians, sometimes termed as leftists, often let their dissent voices heard. Edward Said, Robert Fisk, Harper editor Alexander Cockburn, Tom Englhardt, Nick Turse, Julian Assange of WikiLeaks, Paul Craig Roberts, Tim Wise, Ralph Nader, Ward Churchil, Lila Rajiva and Peter Linebaugh are none but the minority voices.
Indian writers like Vijay Prashad, Arundhuti Roy, Sharmila Bose are often targeted for their write-ups and lectures. They are against any oppression on the Indian minorities and vocal against state apathy. They are all intellectual minority.
Majority turned Minority
Moral majority means the largest group of people in a society, considered as having very traditional ideas about moral matters, religion, sexual behaviour, etc but they may not be in power even if they are voted to. Because for ruling a country a political party needs to have mass support of the people, a large number of judges who can overturn your power anytime, a good number of supporter executives — secretaries, police and cooperative army and finally the press back in country but simultaneously you need to have collusion with foreign actors, negotiations with big neighboring powers/countries. As the empire looks for moderate Muslim in a predominantly Muslim country, moderate Hindu in a predominantly Hindu country. As the US, where 6 percent Jews control 96 percent of the media, tries ceaselessly to find out moderate, pro-American leaders and people in Cuba as Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh thinks 25 pc people here in Bangladesh are anti-India. This 25pc of the people comprise mainly Islamic party voters, some real leftists and also a section of nationalists those who are not opportunists. There are a small number of honest and truthful secularists (they may be less than 10pc) who oppose all sorts of Indian injustices though not in loud voice. Those, who are critical of Indian, water, land, trade, connectivity aggression are the real minority, who think them to be the real pro-people. They are the champions of human rights. Pro-Indian secularists overtly and some nationalists covertly are the majority here in Bangladesh they don’t strictly follow the ethics in life and are not ready to abide by the rules of their religion. Though I have doubt whether all the seemingly Muslims can follow all the sunnah of Prophet (SM).

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