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Bru refugees repatriation deferred to August 25

Mizoram

Bru refugees repatriation deferred to August 25

Aizawl: The final repatriation of the last batch of Bru refugees lodged at six relief camps in Kanchanpur sub-division of north Tripura district has been deferred to 25 August, state home department officials saidon Sunday.

File photo: for representational

They said that though the repatriation of Bru tribal was earlier scheduled to commence from 14 August, it has been deferred to 25 August due to the unpreparedness of a section of inmates of the relief camps.

“The Bru families were not fully prepared as there were some families, who were yet to complete the process of securing important documents such as bank account, Aadhar card and ration card,” officials said.

They said that the decision for deferment was taken at a meeting between officials of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), representatives of Mizoram and Tripura governments and Bru leaders at Damchera on Friday.

The repatriation process was expected to be completed by 25 September against the previous schedule of September 10, officials said.

According to the officials, the Friday meeting also discussed about closure of all refugees camps in Tripura after the completion of repatriation in October.

Meanwhile, sources said the Bru refugees were reluctant to return to Mizoram as the centre government has not acceded to their demands.

Apart from the rehabilitation package offered by the centre at the quadripartite meeting in New Delhi on 3 July, the Bru tribals have demanded creation of Area Development Council (ADC), cluster village, one-time cash assistance, increment of land allotment for agriculture and sustenance, among others.

Mizoram officials, however, said that the centre rejected the Bru demands.

Sources from refugee capms said that the Bru tribals were staging demonstrations at their respective camps in Tripura protesting against the Centre’s rejection.

As per the quadripartite agreement, the Bru families, when return to Mizoram would be given financial assistance of Rs 4 lakh. Each family would also be provided housing assistance to the tune of Rs 1.50 lakh, free ration for two years and monthly allowance of Rs 5,000 each for the same period.

The cash assistance would be provided after three years of uninterrupted stay in Mizoram and housing assistance would be given in three installments.

Altogether 32,857 Bru refugees belonging to 5,413 families are currently lodging at six relief camps in Tripura, according to officials.

The Bru families, when returned to Mizoram, would resettle in 46 villages in Mamit district, 40 villages in Kolasib district and 4 villages in south Mizoram’s Lunglei district.

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Mr. Khojol is a journalist based in Aizawl, Mizoram. He writes for various national and regional media houses. In his free time, he can be caught reading books and watching movies.

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