Introducing Myself

Ukhengching Marma
Posted September 24, 2015 from Bangladesh

Hello All,

I am Ukhengching Marma and I am an indigenous girl fromChittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh.I am glad to be part of this group because I always have wanted to share the stories of Indigenous Women from Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh. I wanted to share their teers, their sufferings to the global platform like World Pulse where I could learn the stories from the women across the globe who are fighting against the gender violnce cases and have raised their voices.I belong to an Indigenous group called "Marma" in Bangladesh and we the indigenous women are subjected to sexual violence due to raise fear among the minority indigenous communities.Another reason is to create tension among such communities to have them evicted from their ancestral lands in order to eventually grab the properties.Another important reasonsfor committing acts of violence against indigenous women are culture of impunity and political influence.I strongly beleive citizens of the country Bangladesh , indigenous women have the rights to get justice and they should demand justice for all the violence perpetrated against them.

I consider social media has provided the opportunity to speak up. Around 10 years ago , the sexual incidents against Indigenous Women in my place could not come out to the national or international media due to lack of internet connection or communication. And numerious these type of cases were hidden due to the political pressure from Bangladesh Govt itself. But now stories are being shared, spreaded and people are not apprehensive more to speak up. Specially the sexual violence cases are coming out to the light and perpetrators are being caught. This year one 8 years old Marma girl was raped and I stood up along with other volunteers to spread the case in the media through facebook to get attention from the national level and international level. My writting on this case was able to bring concern among many people and cited by Amnesty International's Country Coordinator's journal.

Here is a true story of an eight years old Indigenous girl who was raped by a 48 years old guy from a Majority Community:

http://www.dhakatribune.com/op-ed/2015/jan/22/survivor

I also beleive violence against women not only comes physically but also virtual way. We can see also some evil effects of social media where some evil minded people try to humilate girls or woman by spreading nudity or unrespectful posts using vulgur words. Few days ago , i saw a post about one of my known young girl indicating her contact information and relationships and private life.The public post caused humilation of the girl in social media and infront of many relatives and known person. Then I immediately took action with other online activitists by reporting the page and the page was shut down by facebook community.

I am also expecting to hear many stories from the sisters of this group and lets stand against any type of Gender Violence

Please Consider read my another post here:

https://www.worldpulse.com/en/community/users/ukheng/posts/35156

Comments 3

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Damilola Fasoranti
Sep 26, 2015
Sep 26, 2015

Dear Ukheng,

As I read through your post. What gripped me along the lines is the active role you are playing  alongside other great minds to bring down this menace of gender violence especially ageainst women. The 2 paragraphs below captures this illustration.

"This year one 8 years old Marma girl was raped and I STOOD UP along with other volunteers to spread the case in the media through facebook to get attention from the national level and international level.

Then I immediately TOOK ACTION with other online activitists by reporting the page and the page was shut down by facebook community"

I agree with you that Social media and in fact, the internet is an awesome resource. You have painted the 2 sides of the coin - negative annd positive. We shall all strive to create goodness for people to be safe and productive using these platforms.

Words and media play an important role in our culture and as such we must not take this area with levity.

Thank you for sharing your heart with us and the progress you are making. What are the other ways you intend to use to help these women overcome these violence?

I hope to hear more of your exploits.

Hearty Cheers,

Fasoranti.

AnesaK
Sep 27, 2015
Sep 27, 2015

Dear ukheng,

While working in India last year, I was confronted daily with headlines of instances of rural and urban rape cases. I was puzzled about the extent of the coverage of the problem, but understood that it was the only way to create concensus and diologue about gender issues that were ongoing in the country. It dawned on me that speaking out was essential in order to document and legitimize what had happend.There are vast amount of instances of unreported cases of rape, and for those seeking justice and punishment of perpetrators, visibility and shame through media was the only way to gain public visibility of what's happening all over the country (and how the system is rigged to shame the victims and protect perpetrators). Because of this expereince, I believe that speaking out, educating and SHAMING perpetrators/holding them accountable is an important first step to take to end violence against women. I am so proud of the work you're doing in Bagladesh and wish you the best! I have no doubt your work will have transforational effects on your society...congrats! -A

Kristina M
Sep 30, 2015
Sep 30, 2015

Dear Ukhengching,

As I read this, I was impressed with all of the action that you take to keep the spotlight on this type of violence in order for it to be discussed.  After I read your story about how you helped that 8 year old by providing translation services for her family so they could communicate with the doctors, I was even more impressed.  Please keep shining the spotlight on this violence and helping others as you can.