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‘Supplies to Bru relief camps may stop after Jan 15’

 AGARTALA, Jan 9 - Displaced Bru refugees of Mizoram, sheltered in six camps in Tripura, will be deprived of ration supplies and cash from January 15, if the Union Government does not extend its deadline for doling out benefits to them, officials said.

 As the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) is yet to convey its decision on the matter, supplies to the migrants might be stopped mid-next week, an official said.

“The state has been providing cash and food to the relief camps as per instructions of the MHA, which had last year halted supplies for a brief period after failing to repatriate the Brus,” Abhedananda Baidya, subdivisional magistrate of Kanchanpur in North Tripura district, said.

Bruno Msha, secretary of the Mizoram Bru Displaced Peoples Forum, said the community, comprising more than 35,000 refugees, was aware of the situation and that Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh would be apprised of the matter soon.

“We will write to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh seeking his intervention in a day or two,” Msha said.

Thousands of Brus have been living in Tripura relief camps since 1997 in the wake of communal tension in Mizoram. The Centre had embarked on the eighth phase of repatriation of Bru refugees in August, 2018 as per an agreement signed with the leaders of the tribal community. However, the repatriation package was rejected by most refugees. – PTI

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