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Brus not to return to Mizoram unless demands met

PTI | Aizawl |

An apex body of displaced Bru people staying in six refugee camps in Tripura on Sunday said that they are not likely to return to Mizoram unless their demands are met, even as their repatriation was scheduled to begin from second week of February.

Mizoram Bru Displaced People's Forum (MBDPF) president A Sawibunga said that the Bru people of the relief camps were not interested in returning to Mizoram unless the Centre and the state government concede to their demands.

"The state government did not agree to our demand for providing five hectares of land for repatriated Brus and did not even offered smaller size lands," Sawibunga said.

He also lamented that the state government refused to rehabilitate them in a village of about 500 families while the Ministry of Home Affairs, which has agreed to enhance the rehabilitation package, was yet to decide on the amount.

In November, Mizoram officials identified 32,857 people belonging to 5,413 families staying in relief camps in Tripura for physical repatriation.

The physical repatriation was initially scheduled to commence from November 30 but it could not take off due to various reasons including increase in the number of bona fide residents of Mizoram from 21,000 to 32,857, necessitating revision of the expenditure estimate.

The Brus are lodged in the six relief camps since the later part of 1997 following exodus from Mizoram due to communal tension.