Bru repatriation from Tripura on Monday saw a large group of women living in six relief camps set up protests demanding justice for Linda, a Bru woman married off to Mizoram last year, who was allegedly burnt alive. The women carried placards reading ‘We want Justice’, ‘Dont allure our inmates repatriate to Mizoram and kill us there’, ‘No ADC No Repatriation’.
Speaking to indianexpress.com, Kanchanpur Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Abhedananda Baidya said that the issue was referred to Mamit district superintendent of police Shashank Jaiswal. Jaiswal, after investigation, said that one Linda Bru, married to Vanlalvena of Tlangkhang village in Mamit district last year, was allegedly burnt alive by her husband.
As per sources in Mizoram Police, the accused was taken in police custody after the woman died at Zoram Medical College in Aizawl on Saturday.
The police concluded that the accused allegedly killed his wife but it was a case of family brawl and had nothing to do with Mizo-Bru ethnic discord.
Baidya said the issue sparked off a major dissent among the Bru displacees, who declined to return anymore under existing conditions and started protesting since 8:30 this morning.
They called off the agitation at noon after discussion with their leaders, but declined to return under repatriation package. Vehicles assigned by the Mizoram government for repatriation went back empty.
A team of Mizoram officials were dispatched to oversee the repatriation process from Tripura. One of them, who wished to stay anonymous, said, “The displacees started protest this morning in camps. Our vehicles have returned to base”.
“We want capital punishment for the culprit. We also want proper safety and security for Bru women in Mizoram. We want justice”, said Asonti Reang, a girl protesting with hundreds of other women at Kaskau relief camp, in a video.
Achaksa Bru, a displacee from Mizoram who has been living in Naisinghpara camp for last 22 years, said women of all the camps have come out in protest against the incident since it shows the stark insecurity of Bru women in Mizoram.
Out of 37,000 Bru displacees who fled their villages in Mamit, Kolasib and Lunglei districts of Mizoram 22 years back in 1997, 32,000 still live in six transit camps in north Tripura district.
Nearly 5,000 went back in eight phases of repatriation previously. Many returned later with complaints of bad living conditions.
On the first day of ninth phase of repatriation, which started on October 3, 51 families returned to Mizoram.