Published:  01:22 AM, 03 October 2017

Bangladesh shouldn't be future for Rohingya

Bangladesh shouldn't be future for Rohingya

In span of last 5 weeks since August 25, more than  5,00,000 Rohingya have crossed over to Bangladesh from the northern Rakhine state in Myanmar and that added immense strain for Bangladesh.  The people are taking shelter in a two biggest registered camps in Kutupalang and Nayapara in Ukhia and Teknaf upazilas of Coxs bazaar. As the place is inadequate in compare to Rohingya people some are forced to take up temporary shelter on the Ukhia-Teknaf road, and in schools, madrasas, mosques and nearby hills.

Besides , every day 8 babies born in average  that will add some more people. In a report of Ministry of Health it is found that there are 70,000 females who are pregnant. It is more likely that more women will get pregnant in the meantime as the Rohingya women and adolescents (girls) are living under open sky where there is no special security system for women and they are more vulnerable. 

Does Bangladesh have any further plan about these huge numbers of Rohingya People?  If has any what it can be? For a country like Bangladesh, that is already densely over populated and has limited storage of food, Medicare facilities for its own people. In this situation what or else can it do for these huge number of Rohingya people including some 4,00,000 that have already taken shelter in Bangladesh in last three decades. 

However, many countries have already extended their hand by providing them food, safe drinking water and health facilities but that are not adequate for them.   But no countries even any Muslim country of the world are not showing any interest to take the responsibility of these Rohingya people's accommodation in their country.

Already, Bangladesh government has extended its hand by giving shelter for the people who fled from Rakhaine state since 25 August this year.   More or less, by the local as well as International NGOs, CSOs and Government are helping this people  by providing food, drinking water and medicine. Though they are adequate for those huge half million of Rohingya people. 

However, the people get sheds on their head but there are no proper sanitation system for this half million people. As a result of this a good number of people have to defecate at open space that increases the risk of a disease outbreak there.   In a report it is found that there are 1,532 latrine for more than  5,000,00 Rohingya people in the camp that means for  around 327 people there is only 1 latrine in average.  As a result the latrines always remain busy as many users queue up to respond to the call of nature. And the toilets' odor is too bad to tolerate.

In most cases, finding no other options the people who are staying in the roadside or open space or hills defecate in open space and cleaned with plucked leaves as there are water shortages too.   For women their miseries are more terrible. They have to wait till the sun set and manage defecation somehow in the dark.  Moreover, menstruation is natural things for any girl who reached her puberty. But in the joint relief it is totally neglected and as a result the female have to suffer a lot in their menstruation period.

In average, for an adult the average weight of feces is 123 gram with a standard deviation of 40.2 and a standard error of 3.74. If this half million people defecate in the open or maintaining proper hygienic system for latrine, it will not outbreak  diseases but also put a bad impact in the environment what is not at all expected in the area like Cox's Bazar, world's longest sea beach,  the tourism hub for Bangladesh. Already, the consequences have started shown that can be seen in the area where the Rohingya people are taken shelter now.

Another, matter of concern is that a good number of Rohingya people are taking shelter in the nearest hills in Cox's bazaar, by cutting down hills and making home what may result in landslide in future.  It is noted that this year we faced such deadly incident in Rangamati that killed hundreds of people.

By the sake of humanity Bangladesh government has given shelter to this huge number of Rohingya people   for some time. But it is not still sure when the Myanmar government will take back these people or will take ever as they don't consider those their own people and have no national identity in Myanmar?  

Already Bangladesh is densely populated country and adding another nearly 1 million people's accommodation and as well as their maintenance will add no benefits except a huge burden.  Moreover, these people will create hindrance in our labor market as they can reduce the rate of wage in the market due to their means of earning. 

Bangladesh government should rethink about this matter considering the Bangladesh tourism, labor market and take necessary action as soon as possible.  And put pressure to Myanmar to take back their people to their country. The writer is a researcher and development activist, to know him and his write-up please visit www.mostafizurrahamanbd.com. Email: smostafiz_r@yahoo.com

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