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Bru repatriation deferred, to start from Aug 25

Press Trust of India  |  Aizawl/Agartala 

The final repatriation of 5,407 Bru refugee families from to Mizoram, scheduled to start from August 14, was deferred to August 25, a home department said here today.

However, the refugees have staged demonstrations in camps saying their demands for more sops were not conceded.

The said the deferment was due to unpreparedness of a section of the inmates of the relief camps at Kanchanpur sub-division in North district.

As per the revised plan, the repatriation process was expected to be completed by September 25 and not September 10, as scheduled earlier, he said.

"There were some Bru family members who were yet to complete the process of securing documents such as ration card, Aadhaar card, bank account," the said.

The decision that the repatriation would start from August 25 was made at a meeting attended by officials of the (MHA), governments of and and others yesterday, of Aditi Majumder said.

However, Bru refugees demonstrated in their camps saying the MHA officials did not concede to their demands of of an (ADC) for them, cluster villages, one-time cash assistance and increased land allotment for agriculture and sustenance.

"The MHA officials have straightaway denied these demands and said nothing more than the assurances made in the agreement with central government can be given," Mizoram Bru Displaced Peoples Coordination Committee (MBDPCC) L Laldingliana said.

The MBDPCC is a new organisation, while the Mizoram Bru Displaced Peoples Forum (MBDPF) had signed the July 3 agreement with Centre and governments of Mizoram and Tripura for repatriation of over 32,000 Bru refugees.

also met the MHA officials and demanded cluster villages after repatriation.

As per the agreement, the refugees would be given a package of Rs 1.5 lakh for housing assistance, Rs 4 lakh for sustenance, free ration for 2 years and Rs 5,000 per month.

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

A video of people agitating in refugee camps at Kanchanpur against the repatriation offer has become viral.

Altogether 32,876 Brus belonging to 5,407 families are lodged in six relief camps in Tripura.

The Brus are in Tripura since late 1997 in the wake of a communal tension triggered by the murder of a inside the Dampa Tiger Reserve on October 21, 1997 by Bru 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.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, August 11 2018. 20:00 IST