A large number of non-tribal (outsiders) from other states have illegally entered Mizoram and are currently staying in different parts of the state without valid Inner Line Permit (ILP) or not possessing the travel document, a senior police officer said.
State Deputy Inspector General of Police (Headquarters) Lalbiakthanga Khiangte said that the state police have recently carried out surprise checks in several places during which a large number of non-tribal people have been found staying without valid ILP or violating conditions of the permits.
He said that the prolonged failure to conduct ILP checking due to the COVID-19 pandemic could be the reason for the case.
“ILP checking has not been conducted for a long time due to the Covid-19 pandemic which could be one of the main reasons why there are many persons with invalid ILP as well as not possessing any ILP,” Khiangte said.
According to the DIG, a total of 124 people were arrested in Aizawl alone for not possessing valid ILPs between April 1 and April 18.
Of the 124 vilators, 85 people were either convicted or pushed back to their native places and the remaining 39 people were released again, he said.
He said that the process of issuance of ILP was interrupted in Aizawl after a massive fire burnt down the district deputy commissioner office in December last year.
Expressing concern about the present situation, the state police in its recent statement reminded ILP holders and sponsors of their responsibilities and duties.
The statement had said that the sponsor is responsible for the good conduct of the permit or pass holder during his stay in Mizoram and should ensure that the holder is engaged only for the purpose mentioned in the permit.
The sponsor should also arrange the sending back of the holder from Mizoram and surrender the ILP thereafter.
The pass holder should not work under any person other than the sponsor and the permit should be renewed at least 7 days before it expires, it had said.
The statement further added that checking of ILP would be conducted at regular intervals in order to minimise the number of persons staying without permits and to enforce the Inner Line Regulation.
Young Mizo Association (YMA), the largest civil society in the state, has also launched raids across the state to find out ILP violators.
Central YMA general secretary Prof. Lalnuntluanga said that they have instructed all their YMA groups, sub-headquarters, branches and units to carry out checks before April 12.
Detailed reports are awaited from different parts of the state, he said.
The ILP, a provision of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation of 1873, is an official travel document issued to Indian citizens for entry into protected areas, including Mizoram.