Dhaka – Indian actress Priyanka Chopra has called the global community to do lot more for hundreds of thousands of Rohingya children who has nothing to claim on their own.
Chopra, also the winner of Miss World title in 2000, made the emotional appeal at a news conference in Dhaka Thursday at the end of her four-day visit to Bangladesh.
The Bollywood actress, who arrived in Bangladesh on Monday as a goodwill ambassador of the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) and spent three days in refugee camps in south-eastern Cox’s Bazar district.
She called the people to be more compassionate to the refugees and the children living in crowded camps made of tents and bamboo shafts.
“Open your hearts with compassion. Please be sympathetic and treat these children as your own,” Chopra appealed.
Nearly 700,000 Rohingya Muslims have been living in Cox’s Bazar after they fled a brutal military crackdown in neighbouring Rakhine state of Myanmar.
Half of the refugees are children, according to the UN estimate.
“The refugee children are the world’s responsibility because they have no place to go. They don’t have anything they can call their own,” said Chopra.
The actress, during her visit to the camp, passed time playing, dancing and having fun with refugee children in the camps. She also attended classes at school run by the UNICEF.
“I would really like to employ the world to have a little bit of compassion for the people, who don’t have anything,” she added.
The actress asked for lot more to do before the monsoon, which is set to begin formally in July. The monsoon poses threat of landslide and floods in the camps build on the slope of hills in Cox’s Bazar.
Chopra also met with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, prior to her departure from Dhaka.
During the meeting with the Prime Minister, she said the world should learn from Bangladesh how to respond to call of humanity.
“The world should learn from Bangladesh,” a premier’s office spokesman quoted her as saying.
The celebrity actress praised Hasina for shouldering the burden of over a million forcibly displaced ethnic minority people of Myanmar.
PM’s sister Sheikh Rehana and family members were present during the call on after her three-day visit to the Rohingya camps.
She told the premier that she was concerned about the possibility of a “generation loss” of a particular ethnicity as a large number of children have no access to education and passing their days roaming around.
“The children may go astray and even become extremists if they are deprived of the opportunity of having education,” Chopra said.
The premier told Chopra that her government gave shelter to the Rohingya solely on humanitarian ground as people of Bangladesh experienced the same situation in 1971.