154 displaced Bru families returned to their
homes in Mizoram today
New Delhi: “A total of 154 Bru families displaced from Mizoram in November 2009 returned to their homes today in 78 commander jeeps with one police escort for every 10 jeeps. The state government of Mizoram and the state government of Tripura provided the transport and security facilities. A total of 210 Bru families will return by 26 May 2010.” – stated Asian Centre for Human Rights in a press release issued to the media today.
“In the midst of communal tensions in Manipur and Meghalaya, the return of the Brus for the first time since they fled to Tripura in 1997 indeed provides a unique opportunity to Mizoram to identify itself as the most peaceful state in North East India. The State of Mizoram must seize the opportunity to resolve the Bru crisis once and for all.” – stated Mr Suhas Chakma, Director of the Asian Centre for Human Rights.
On 15 February 2010, the Bru Coordination Committee submitted its demands to the Ministry of Home Affairs for the return of the Brus displaced in November 2009.
The Ministry of Home Affairs after discussion with the State government of Mizoram informed the Asian Centre for Human Rights that it had sanctioned grants-in-aid of Rs. 2.43 crore to the State government of Mizoram for meeting expenditure on repatriation and rehabilitation of Bru families who had fled to Tripura in November, 2009. This assistance would be utilized by State Government of Mizoram for providing housing assistance @ Rs. 38,500 per Bru family whose huts were burnt, free ration to such families for a period of 9 months, cost of transportation from Tripura to the Bru villages in Mizoram. Apart from these, assistance include cost of preparation of land for Jhum cultivation to Bru families who did not flee to Tripura, household kits and implements and for meeting cost of construction of barracks, sentry posts etc. for State Armed Police/IR Bn. who would be deployed in relevant areas for facilitating peaceful repatriation and rehabilitation of Bru migrants. (http://www.achrweb.org/press/2010/MHA-BRUs-0410.pdf)
After intense discussion, the arrangements for the return of 210 Bru families were organized. The remaining families will return on 24th and 26th May 2010.[Ends]