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The ninth and final phase of repatriation for over 26,100 people lodged at six relief camps in North Tripura district will begin from October 1
The ninth and final phase of repatriation for over 26,100 people lodged at six relief camps in North Tripura district will begin from October 1|File image 
MIZORAM

Mizoram: 4,400 Bru families to be reptriated from Tripura in Oct

Decision taken at a joint monitoring group meeting held in New Delhi on Sept 6, says an official of Mizoram home dept; Rs 350 crore approved for final phase

Henry L Khojol

Aizawl: The Mizoram government will repatriate over 4,400 Bru families from Tripura in October next, an official of state home department said on Sunday.

The official said that the ninth and final phase of repatriation for over 26,100 lodged at six relief camps in North Tripura district will begin from October 1.

The decision was made at a Joint Monitoring Group meeting on Bru repatriation held at New Delhi on September 6, he said.

The meeting chaired by special secretary (internal security), ministry of home affairs, AP Maheswari, also approved in principle Rs 350 crore for the final phase of Bru repatriation from six relief camps in Tripura, the official said.

He said that the approved amount of Rs 350 crore would cover rehabilitation package expenses, which includes 4 lakh for each family, Rs 1.5 lakh each as housing assistance, Rs 5,000 per month for each resettled Bru family in Mizoram and free ration for two years.

The approved amount will also cover transportation, he added.

The official further said that the Mizoram government will arrange transportation for the Bru families.

Apart from top officials of MHA, Friday's meeting was attended by officials of home department from both Mizoram and Tripura governments, leaders of Mizoram Bru Displaced People's Forum (MBDPF), Bru NGOs and Central Young Mizo Association (CYMA).

The Mizoram government had conducted identification of Bru families during July 3 to 20 at six relief camps in Tripura during which over 26,100 people from more than 4,400 families were identified as bona fide residents of Mizoram.

The refugees would be resettled in Mamit, Kolasib and Lunglei districts.

The state government and the NGO Coordination Committee, an umbrella organisation of the civil societies and student associations, which threatened to boycot Parliamentary polls on the issue of exercise of franchise by Bru voters in the relief camps, reached an agreement before the Lok Sabha polls held in April, that the repatriation process would be taken up this year and it should be the last attempt.

Thousands of Bru families fled Mizoram and migrated to Tripura following ethnic tension triggered by the murder of a Mizo forest guard by Bru militants in 1997.

Several attempts by the Centre, Mizoram and Tripura governments to repatriate them since 2009 went futile as the refugees did not accept the repatriation packages.