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Tripura: Bru migrants write to CM, want resettlement process expedited

The migrants have sought the CM’s intervention to clear cash dole, purportedly pending from January this year, and support materials like blankets, mosquito nets, chappals, Lifebuoy soap, and arrears of ration for October 2019, and ration support pending for 13 months.

Written by Debraj Deb | Agartala |
June 30, 2022 3:36:30 pm
Manik Saha, Tripura, Biplab Kumar Deb, Indian Express, India news, current affairs, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express India NewsTripura Chief Minister Manik Saha (Twitter/Manik Saha)

Mizoram’s Bru migrants, who are being resettled in Tripura, wrote to Chief Minister Dr Manik Saha Wednesday seeking to expedite the resettlement process and clear cash dole and relief dues pending since the last six months.

In a letter to CM Saha through the Kanchanpur sub-divisional magistrate, a delegation of Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Forum (MBDPF), Bru Displayed Youths Association (BDYA), Bru Displaced Welfare Organization (BDWO) and Bru Tribal Development Society (BTDS) said the ongoing process of resettlement is “quite slow, ambiguity and not up to the mark”.

Whilst urging the chief minister to resolve resettlement of Bru migrants as envisaged in the quadripartite agreement signed between the Government of India, state governments of Tripura and Mizoram, and the migrants, the Bru migrants have now also said the current system of resettlement “needs to be revised and changed to speed up the process to avoid unnecessary delay and complications”.

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The migrants have sought the CM’s intervention to clear cash dole, purportedly pending from January this year, and support materials like blankets, mosquito nets, chappals, Lifebuoy soap, and arrears of ration for October 2019, and ration support pending for 13 months.

As part of a Rs 600 crore package announced to resettle them in Tripura permanently, the Bru migrants are being resettled at 15 locations across six districts of the state. As per the government guidelines, support is stopped to the families who are selected to undergo shifting to resettlement colonies in the ongoing phase.

However, the migrants had earlier objected saying the resettlement package benefits were not given to all the families together, which left many unattended, even though they had not shifted to colonies yet.

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A Bru migrant leader also said that around 453 migrant families were “left out due to technical mistakes, spelling mistakes, mismatch of name of ration card holder or guardians” and said they should be re-included to get benefits of the resettlement package.

The migrants have also asked the government to issue timely resettlement packages to families who were already settled in the different resettlement locations.

“The resettlement packages, like financial assistance for house construction and monthly Rs 5000 provided to the selected families were delayed all the time,” Bruno Msha and other migrant leaders wrote in their letter.

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They also sought that rice ration supplies be issued immediately for June and said the current month’s supplies were delayed though the ration is usually issued on or before the first week of every month.

Among other demands placed before the CM, the migrants sought to immediately start the resettlement process at four locations – Ashapara, Hezacherra, Nabojoypara and Khakchangpara – apart from approving two other proposed resettlement locations at Bikramjoypara and Nandirampara villages.

Earlier in April this year, the Bru migrants wrote to Union Home Minister Amit Shah and said 90 per cent of the resettlement process was pending due to “negligent and delaying attitude” of the state government.

Nearly 37,000 Bru migrants fled ethnic clashes in Mizoram in 1997 and were sheltered in six relief camps in North Tripura district. Nearly 5,000 returned in nine phases of repatriation but almost the same number fled in renewed clashes in 2009 and came to Tripura.

Twenty-three years after this protracted displacement, which has become the largest internal displacement in North East India so far, an agreement was signed on January 16, 2020 to permanently resettle them. The pact came two years after another agreement in June 2018 which sought to repatriate them to Mizoram, which was rejected by the migrants saying they were not “properly consulted” over it.

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First published on: 30-06-2022 at 03:36:30 pm

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