Bru
File Photo of Bru refugees. Photo Source - India TV

Reacting to media reports that the Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Forum (MBDPF) was not happy with the one-time financial assistance of Rs 4 lakh for the repatriated Bru families, A Sawibunga, chairman of the forum said it was an ‘utter lie’.

“We had just signed an agreement with the Union Home Ministry taking Tripura and Mizoram Chief Ministers as witnesses where we agreed on the proposal by the ministry. The Forum has not talked to any media regarding any issue of discontentment stating that all our demands are not met. The important thing is that the Bru people are quite contented with the agreement,” A Sawibunga said.

According to the agreement, Bru refugee families, who would be repatriated to Mizoram from Tripura, would be given one-time financial assistance of Rs 4 lakh, a house to each family and free rations for two years. Besides, they would also be provided a monthly assistance of Rs 5,000.

Under the Bru Migrants Repatriation Agreement, displaced people, who are currently living in temporary camps in Tripura, would be repatriated to Mizoram before September 30, 2018.

“The Bru refugees in the camps are excited and happy with the agreement. However, out of the 32,876 people living in the camps, there may be some who feel otherwise,” Sawibunga added saying that majority of the displaced Brus were quite contented.

The cost of the entire repatriation exercise will be Rs 435 crore till 2020-21.

Each resettled family would be given a cash assistance of Rs 5,000 per month along with free rations for two years. The Bru refugee families would receive house building assistance of Rs 1.5 lakh to be disbursed in three instalments as per the agreement.

The Mizoram Government would ensure security of all repatriated refugees who were identified and verified as per the 1997 electoral rolls of Mizoram.

Around 8,000 Bru refugees have gone back to Mizoram since 1997 in six batches and they have been living peacefully in the State.

The Central Government, so far, has provided Rs 348.90 crore to the Tripura Government for the expenses it incurred for maintenance of the Bru families and Rs 68.90 crore to the Mizoram Government for providing assistance to the 8,000 Bru refugees, who had already gone back to the State.

Sangzuala Hmar

Sangzuala Hmar is Northeast Now Correspondent in Aizawl. He can be reached at: sz.hmar@gmail.com

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