Bru leaders with deputy chief minister Jishnau Dev Barma on July 23 Credit: EastMojo Image

Agartala: While dialogue for selection of location for permanently settling the Bru inmates continues, the leaders of the Bru community have now placed the demand for inclusion of another 173 families in the list of families being settled in the state.

Speaking with EastMojo, Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Forum (MBDPF) general secretary Bruno Msha said that recently in a meeting with the deputy chief minister Jishnu Dev Varma they demanded a similar relief package for split-household families.

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“These families include the members who have divorced, separated and distressed families who have moved from Mizoram in 2009. Many families which once had only five members have now extended to 20 members and as a result some of them moved to other places but the ration card remained the same,” Msha said.

He also said that the government of Mizoram while conducting the population census before repatriation to Mizoram in 2016 and 2019 had provided a similar package to those separate families in the list.

“The Tripura has started the population census but the state government is not accepting the split families and has denied providing the similar package under the resettlement pact signed in January this year,” Msha added.

He also said that the agreement signed on July 3, 2018 between the representatives of the Bru and centre had mentioned about this issue but yet the state government has not accepted them as separated families.

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“During the meeting with deputy chief minister Jishnu Dev Varma on July 23 we have pointed out the matter and after giving a patient hearing to our concern he has assured us that the state government would take a decision on this matter at the earliest”, Msha said.

Speaking about the cash dole the Bru leaders said that due to the outbreak of novel coronavirus the cash dole which was transferred through DBT has stopped and they have demanded cash distribution among the people for the time being.

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In 1997, following ethnic tension, around 5,000 families comprising around 30,000 Bru/Reang tribals were forced to flee Mizoram Mamit, Kolasib and Lunglei districts to Tripura following an ethnic clash with the Mizos in 1997 and seek shelter in Tripura. These people were housed in temporary camps at Kanchanpur in North Tripura.

After signing the agreement, Union home minister Amit Shah had announced a 40×30 ft area plot to build a house, Rs 4 lakh as fixed deposit, financial aid of Rs 5,000 per month along with free ration supply for the next two years to all the Bru families. To build houses, an amount of Rs 1.5 lakh will also be provided to every family.

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