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Displaced Bengali Hindus find US sympathizer
 

American activist visits Barak Valley

From our Staff Reporter

SILCHAR, Feb 21: With a firm determination to highlight the pathetic plight of the displaced Bengali Hindus in the international arena, Dr Richard L Benkin, founder of Forcefield of Interfaith Strength, a Washington-based human rights organization along with Sydney-based human rights activist Miriam Jones visited Silchar and border district Karimganj to have a first hand account of the Bengali Hindus who had been compelled to leave Bangladesh by the Islamic fundamentalist. Dr Benkin and Jones visited Dohalia, a village in Karimganj bordering Bangladesh on Saturday. However, their mission could not be termed as successful, as a local companion said that none of the displaced Hindus want to admit that they had actually shifted from Bangladesh fearing that this might hamper their chance of getting Indian citizenship. However, Dr Benkin found a Hindu Bengali in Karimganj who had shifted to India four years back.

Later talking to The Sentinel over telephone from Karimganj, Dr Benkin, who had been working on the displaced Bengali Hindus, said, it was a pity that the international media and human right organizations were completely in the dark about the hardship these Bengali Hindus had been going through for decades.

Dr Benkin had, for several years, been travelling around West Bengal in an effort to gather evidence about the plight of Bangladeshi Hindus and to bring that evidence to human rights supporters in the United States Congress and Senate. Benkin said, subsequently he came to know about Assam where the State Government had began issuing orders of eviction to many of these Hindus, all victims of Islamic atrocities. Dr Benkin was surprised to note that the Assam Government had not issued any such orders to the growing number of Muslims in the State. Benkin maintained that these infiltrators were attempting to replicate the demographic shift in Assam as in West Bengal.

At this juncture, Benkin came into contact with Protection Forum for Bengali Hindus of Assam which held a seminar on December 4, 2010 in Guwahati to formulate a resolution asking the State to provide citizenship to the displaced Hindus. Eeresh Bhattacharjee of the Forum told The Sentinel from Guwahati that Dr Benkin had assured them that he would mould public opinion in the US for the displaced Bengali Hindus otherwise India’s bid to attain permanent chair in the UN Security Council would be challenged.

Dr Rajdip Roy, son of former MLA late Bimalangshu Roy, met Benkin on Sunday and apprised him about the plight of the displaced Bengali Hindus. Benkin, who left for Kolkata on Sunday en route to Dhaka, said he would come back to Barak Valley within a year to assess the situation. He would then submit a report on the displaced Bengali Hindus to the UN.

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Assam
 
Assam is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Dispur located in the city of Guwahati.
 
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Nagaland
 
Nagalang is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Kohima. located in the Guwahati city.
 
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Mizoram
 
Mizoram is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Aizwal. located in the Guwahati city.
 
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Meghalaya
 
Meghalaya is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Shillong. located in the Guwahati.
 
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Manipur
 
Manipur is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Imphal.
 
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Tripura
 
Tripura is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Agartala.
 
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Arunachal Pradesh
 
Arunachal Pradesh is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Itanagar.
 
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Sikkim
 
Sikkim is a northeastern state of India with its capital at Gangtok.
 
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