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Raj Punyah fest began in Bandarban

CHTJ Desk: Three day long traditional “Raj Punyah” festival has kicks off in Bandarban from Friday.

Chief of Bomang Circle, engineer U Chaw Prue inaugurated the event.

The 139th royal event is organised to collect annual Jhum taxes from the Jhum farmers and those deposited in the fund created by the royal family.

Rashed Khan Menon, Tourism and Aviation minister, was the chief guest while state minister for CHT affairs, Bir Bahadur Ushe Sing, Bri Gen in Bandarban, Nakib Ahmad Chowdhury, chairman of Bandarban Hill District Council, Kya She Hla, deputy commissioner, Mizanul Haque Chowdhury and superintendent of police, Mizanur Rahman, were the special guests.

On Friday at 11:00am the headmen and karbaries stood in a long queue and they bow down to honoured the Bomang chief by giving tax and different type of gifts.

Every year some 109 headmen (mouzas Chief) from 109 mouzas and Karbaries (para chief) are provide taxes and gifts to the Bomang Chief through “Raj Punyah” festival.

Centering realisation of tax from the jhum farmer, the royal event has been organising by the royal authority since time immemorial in the Bomang Kingdom.

Menon in his speech said the main problem in the hills is land dispute. For the interest of resolving land dispute, the CHT Land Dispute Resolution Commission (amendment) Act-2013 will pass in the parliament very soon. The CHT accord will be execute fully for the sake of bringing sustainable peace in the region.

Bir Bahadur said the government is really sincere to execute the deal. Due to signing of the accord, huge developments have taken place. He says that most of fundamental clauses have already implemented and the remaining provisions will be executed gradually through dialogue.

Bomang Chief U Chaw Prue said we want to work for the development of hilly region with the government. He stressed the need for increase of land tax in the hills through discussion.

The Raj Punyah festival has been holding since the time of Bomang King Chak Nuya in 1875. In the festival ground there are marry go-round, circus, puppet show, varieties show, motorcycle circus and different types of makeshift cloth stalls, tea stalls and restaurants have opened up in the fair.

People from three hill districts of Rangamati Bandraban and Khagrachhari have thronged at the compound of RajBari on the occasion.

Foreigners were also seen gathered to witness the fair at a glimpsed. (chtj-desk/report).