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Maungdaw — Verification authorities extort huge amounts from Rohingya in homeland for addition of newborn in the family list, family group photo, parents being in different family lists, etc. during forced verification operation called “Swe-Tin-Siet” in different parts of Maungdaw, Myo Thuya reports.

Border Guard Police and Immigration (4 Mile based Ma-Ka-Pa) jointly started forced verification operation in Myo Ma, Southern Quarter (Quarter 2) on January 9 where they are extorting money under various pretexts.

Family group photo is 3000 kyats per family; addition of newborn or new member to the family list is 17,000 kyats per person; home visit for any disable or aged person is 80,000 kyats per visit; and tens of thousands for omission of any member from the list.

 If the both parents of a child are not included in the same family list, the child is not added to the family as a member. Instead he is registered and photographed alone and differently and the parents are fined 5000 kyats per child.

The same operation is being conducted in the Urban Region of Maungdaw including Myoma Kayin Dan, Eastern Quarter 4, Western Quarter 1 and other parts of the central Maungdaw township.

Swe-Tin-Siet laterally meaning ‘forced verification’ is an annual or occasional verification operation documenting Rohingyas as Bengali as a preliminary process for NVC, updating family lists by adding or omitting members as necessary and harassing them to extort money for trivial reasons as mentioned above.

In the last week of December, the forced verification operation was conducted in U Kyin Kya village tract of Northern Maungdaw where the authorities (BGP from Ngakuya and village administration) charged 4000 kyats per family for photography and 40,000 kyats for addition or omission of a member to or from the family lists.

Commenting on the this, Myo Thuya said, “It is a yearly process and government permission for the authorities to extort money from Rohingya publicly and harass them. By the way, it is a good income source for the local authorities including village administration, immigration and Border Guard Police.