Mizoram to start Bru repatriation from Aug 14
Mizoram government today said it would go ahead with the plan as agreed during talks held in Delhi last month for final repatriation of the Bru families lodged in six relief camps in North Tripura district.
At a meeting here, Home Minister R Lalzirliana informed political parties and civil societies of the state that the repatriation would begin as per schedule on August 14 and was expected to be completed by September 10.
Lalzirliana said the state government recently received instructions from the Election Commission to conduct revision of voters' lists in the relief camps, while its earlier order had asked conducting the revision in Mizoram after completion of the physical repatriation process.
"We have to implement the instructions of the Election Commission of India by conducting the electoral roll revisions in the relief camps," he said.
The civil societies and the political parties, however, were not happy with the latest instruction of the EC.
"We decided that the Election Commission would be approached again so that the entire electoral process should be conducted within the state," said TA Vanlalruata, president of central committee of the Young Mizo Association, a civil society organisation.
The Centre, state governments of Mizoram and Tripura and the Mizoram Bru Displaced People's Forum (MBDPF), the apex body of the Bru community in the relief camps, have on July 3 signed an agreement for repatriation of all the Bru refugees from Tripura before September 30.
According to the agreement, Rs 4 lakh would be deposited in the account of the head of each repatriated Bru family, which would mature after three years, and a payment of Rs 1.5 lakh as housing assistance.
Each repatriated Bru family would also be given Rs 5,000 through Direct Benefit Transfer every month and free ration for two years.
Altogether 32,876 Brus belonging to 5,407 families are lodged in six relief camps in Tripura.
While 4,199 Bru families would be resettled in 48 villages in Mamit district, 824 and 384 families would be resettled in 10 villages Kolasib and four villages in Lunglei districts respectively, Mizoram Additional Secretary for Home Lalbiakzama had said on Monday.
However, a section of the Bru refugees were not happy with the repatriation process.
The Brus are in Tripura since late 1997 in the wake of a communal tension triggered by the murder of a forest guard inside the Dampa Tiger Reserve on October 21, 1997 by BruNational Liberation Front militants.
The first attempt to repatriate them in 2009 failed and triggered another wave of exodus after the killing of a youth three days before the commencement of the repatriation process.
Though some Bru families had returned to Mizoram during a number of repatriation processes and on their own, many of them refused to leave Tripura.