AGARTALA/AIZAWL, Oct 18 – Repatriation of the 37,000 Bru refugees from neighbouring Mizoram sheltered in six camps in North Tripura district has run into rough weather with an ethnic organisation stating that they would not return home unless a MoU was signed.
“Unless a MoU is signed by the Mizoram Government with representatives of the displaced Brus, they will not return to Mizoram,” a Bru Displaced Welfare Organisation (BDWO) statement said in Agartala.
“Our sincere request to the Government of Mizoram is that it reassure the rights and dignity of the Bru people, restore peace and harmony and start the process of dialogue that would lead to a permanent solution,” BDWO General Secretary John Lalnuntluanga and President, Azawmdarai said in the statement.
The statement alleged that the Mizoram Government was preparing to repatriate the Bru refugees to Mamit, Kolasib, and Lunglei districts, but the BDWO wanted that they be repatriated to Mamit district only.
The organisation said that they would launch an indefinite hunger-strike and sit-in at Aizawl and Delhi. However, they did not fix any date for it.
Meanwhile, the Repatriation Implementation Committee (RIC), a Bru organisation recently formed in the Naisngpara relief camp in North Tripura’s Kanchanpur subdivision, said that the refugees supported the proposal of the Central, Tripura and Mizoram Governments to repatriate all refugees from Tripura.
In a press statement e-mailed to PTI in Aizawl, RIC president Lallawma and secretary C Nunsiama said that they had full faith in the leadership of Elvis Chorkhy, president of the Mizoram Bru Displaced People’s Forum (MBDPF).
Reacting to the BDWO’s recent press statement, the RIC claimed that some elements in the community were trying to create problems for the refugees by spreading lies.
The RIC statement appealed to all refugees to await the decisions of the government and the Bru leaders coordinating with the Mizoram Government.
“We, the people, must not be influenced by some misguided elements who are out to create trouble and derail the repatriation process,” the statement said.
The Brus are sheltered in the camps in Tripura since 1997 following ethnic clashes with Mizos in their home State. – PTI