Narinjara news


Sittwe, 10 December
:  The dilapidated SittweRangoon Road connecting the western state of Rakhine with the Burmese capital has been under repair since the 17th November, according to our correspondent quoting a number of sources.

The repair work in three sections of the road have been undertaken simultaneously on an urgent basis to make it motorable as many areas have been badly broken and many bridges have become rundown as this year’s heavy rain washed away the bitumen surfaces.

The three sections are at KyauktawMrauk-u in the northern end of the state, Mrebon Township in the middle, and Ann Township close to the Roma Ranges – strategically placed close to the Burma proper.

Light Infantry Battalion 538 based in Rathedaung has been supervising the work on the KyauktawMrauk-u section, while LIB 34 and 55 in Mrebon and Ann.

In the Mrebon section about 1,700 people has been used as forced labour to do the repair work till 1 December, in Ann about one hundred people have been used everyday as forced labour, while the number in the KyauktawMrauk-u section could not be established.  

The Burmese junta officials have told the people off and on that the “voluntary labour” as used in
Burma is part and parcel of the culture and tradition of the Burmese people which earns the doer merit for their afterlife and a prosperous living in this life.  The junta officials have not only denied the presence of “forced labour” in the country, but also used the term “voluntary labour” to define the practice much hated at home and abroad.

Our correspondent on his tour to a number of remote areas has seen large scale use of forced labour by the Burmese military troops in recent days.