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The post-colonial state and minorities: ethnocide in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh

Chakma, Bhumitra


Dr Bhumitra Chakma
Senior Lecturer, Director of the South Asia Project and Programme Director for BA Politics and International Relations


This paper argues that ethnocide in post-colonial states can be located in the interplay of three processes: (1) nation-building and development visions of the bureaucratic state; (2) the struggle for autonomy by the minorities; and (3) militarised pursuit of national security agenda by the bureaucratic state. The bureaucratic, political, economic, cultural and military penetration of the state into the territories of the indigenous communities often results in the marginalisation of those communities and destruction of their cultures and identity. It leads to demand for autonomy by the minorities. The state reacts to the struggle for autonomy by pursuing a militarised security agenda. Ethnocide in the post-colonial state occurs against the vortex of these processes. The Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh is an interesting case of ethnocide in the above context.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2010-07
Journal Commonwealth & comparative politics
Print ISSN 1466-2043
Electronic ISSN 1743-9094
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 48
Issue 3
Pages 281-300
APA6 Citation Chakma, B. (2010). The post-colonial state and minorities: ethnocide in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh. Commonwealth and Comparative Politics, 48(3), (281-300). doi:10.1080/14662043.2010.489746. ISSN 1466-2043
Keywords Political Science and International Relations; Sociology and Political Science
PMID 20617586