June 18, 2015 7:51:27 pm
No Bru tribal responded to the Supreme Court-monitored repatriation process on the fourth and final day of the verification process at Tripura’s Khakchangpara relief camp on Thursday.
Mizoram officials posted at the camp to verify if anyone who wants to return home to Mizoram are indeed original residents of the state have wound up operations and returned home.
Thus far, none of the 1654 adults registered in Mizoram’s electoral rolls or their families who currently live in two relief camps in northern Tripura have opted to return home to Mizoram (The verification process had been carried out at Kaskau relief camp earlier this month, and no Bru tribal had turned up there either).
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Mamit district Deputy Commissioner Vanlalngaihsaka said verification teams will be posted at the third camp, Hamsapara, between June 29 and July 2.
Hamsapara has 719 adults registered in Mizoram’s electoral rolls.
Tens of thousands of Bru tribals fled Mizoram in 1997 following ethnic violence between them and the majority Mizos following the murder of a Mizo official by Bru militants.
They made their way to Tripura where the neighbouring state confined them to designated relief camps where they have been lodged ever since and where the lack of basic amenities is a constant problem. Tripura has repeatedly demanded that the internally displaced population should be sent back to Mizoram.
Six phases of the repatriation process has been organised since 2010 but these have met with limited success, partly because relief camp leaders have rejected the compensation package saying it is too less, the same grouse that has also been aired this time around.
The Ministry of Home Affairs and the Mizoram and Tripura governments have agreed and told the Supreme Court this would be the last time an effort is made to repatriate the tribals.
Anyone who does not take part would be removed from Mizoram’s electoral rolls (where they have continued to remain after a generation in absentia) and the relief camps disbanded, the sides had agreed.
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