Buthidaung, Arakan State: Immigration officer from Buthidaung check-post at entry and exit point had sent eight Rohingyas to jail since last week, said Hamidullah, a driver who has been plying Maungdaw-Buthidaung route.The immigration officer arrested 29 Rohingyas who travelled with White Card to see their relatives at Buthidaung jail, 21 persons were released after taking kyat 500,000 per each and another eight persons -not able to pay the money- were sent to jail and their trial is going on, said Halim, a Human Rights Watchdog from Maungdaw.
Besides, the immigration officers from Maungdaw exit and entry point at four miles gate are taking 1000 kyat who didn’t show “Form 4”, and issuing a token for travelling to Buthidaung. But, last week, the Buthidaung officer didn’t accept the token and arrested 29 Rohingyas with tokens, Halim said.
The Rohingya community from Maungdaw and Buthidaung under Maungdaw district need to obtain “Form 4” to travel within the district. To get this “Form 4” need to follow the offices – village/block admin office recommendation and immigration office- where the Rohingyas have to pay money to issue “Form 4”, said Anwer, an elder from Buthidaung.
Most of the Rohingya from Maungdaw are going to Buthidaung to visit their relatives who are in the jail of Buthidaung. Maungdaw has no jail, only police custodies. For this reason, they travelled with their White Card, which immigration office issued to them since long and didn’t replace it with other one. When the officer issued the White Card, it will be soon changed other cards, said an officer who declaimed to be named.
But, now, the officers are imposing restriction on travelling with White Card and trying to extort money from this community, the officer said.