Bru Repatriation: Centre Pushes For Repatriation of Bru Refugees to Mizoram

Bru refugees
File photo

Special Correspondent

Silchar: Following the four-corner meeting of the Union Home Ministry, the State governments of Mizoram and Tripura as well as Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Forum on July 3, 2018 at New Delhi and the agreement signed thereafter the first meeting of monitoring committee to coordinate for its implementation is slated for August 10 at Agartala.

The meeting of the monitoring committee will be held under the chairmanship of Special Secretary (Internal Security) Ministry of Home Affairs to decide about the modalities for repatriation of Bru refugees to Mizoram.

But, the newly floated Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Coordination Committee (MBDPCC) and the representatives of Bru Internally Displaced People (BIDP) in a joint memorandum addressed to Rajnath Singh, Union Home Minister, New Delhi, and submitted through the Block Development Officer, Dasda, North Tripura, on Wednesday, expressed the feelings and views of around 30 thousand refugees for repatriation. There was a massive protest demonstration in and around the relief camps against their return to the native land on various developmental issues. Speaking over telephone from Kanchanpur refugee camp in North Tripura, Laldingliana, president of MBDPCC said, “The Bru refugees in general declined to endorse the agreement signed by Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Forum in New Delhi without seriously addressing their genuine grievances to facilitate smooth repatriation.”

The inmates of the refugee camps by and large assembled at multi purpose centre of Naisingpara from all the seven relief camps felt a conducive environment has to be created by taking into account their genuine grievances. It was pointed out in the joint memorandum that the Mizoram government has not shown any friendly gesture to take back the refugees, languishing in camps since October 1997. There is also apprehension how far the Mizoram government will carry out the action plan in the larger interest of the refugees. In order to ensure their return and rehabilitation in a proper manner, both the Bru bodies have called for a passionate consideration of their 8 point demands.

The demands include formation of area development council, allotment of 5 hectares of land to each repatriated family, setting up separate cluster or model villages, extension of cash money to each Bru family at the time of repatriation. Besides, the demands are also for updating of electoral rolls before repatriation, identification of around 1000 left out families, granting of general amnesty to all IDPs and updating of ration cards. The Bru bodies have also brought to the notice of the Union Home Minister the pitiable condition of the Brus who were earlier repatriated.

These bodies have reacted strongly against the demand of uniform financial package as raised by Elvis Chorkhy who had repatriated to Mizoram along with around 3000 refugees in 2010. Rather, the demand is for humanitarian and gracious consideration of the refugees in order to ensure trouble free stay in the state of Mizoram. The MBDPCC has also referred to the sprouting of many proxy and impersonated families who have repatriated earlier, raising their voice for uniform financial package after the remaining Brus return to their native land. This is unacceptable to the MBDPCC and BIDP. The memorandum was signed by Laldingliana, president, and Rokhuma, general secretary, MBDPCC.