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Hearing to continue today: Mizoram Home Secy

By The Assam Tribune

AIZAWL, Aug 30 - Hearing of claims and objections of 260 displaced Brus, whose names were excluded from the list of Mizoram�s bona fide citizens during an identification process in July, could not be completed as scheduled on Friday and would continue on Saturday, an official said.

Altogether, 26,128 Brus, lodged in six relief camps of neighbouring Tripura, have made it to the list, he said.

Mizoram Home Secretary Lalbiakzama said the hearing of claims and objections began on Tuesday and was scheduled to be concluded on Friday with some officials sent from Mizoram remaining in the relief camps. It would continue on Saturday also as it could not be completed, he said.

Lalbiakzama told this news agency that he has convened a meeting of officials who conducted the hearing in the relief camps on Monday in Aizawl to complete the whole process before the commencement of the physical repatriation.

Of the 350 Brus claiming to be bona fide residents of Mizoram, the cases of over 80 people were settled while over 260 people have to be verified at a hearing in the relief camps.

Mizoram officials, who conducted the second phase of identification of bona fide Mizoram residents in the six Bru relief camps in Tripura during July 3 to July 20 last had identified 26,128 people belonging to 4,278 families in the second phase of identification.

He said that all the identified families expressed willingness to return to Mizoram from the relief camps in Tripura, but �hardliners and anti-repatriation organisations� may dissuade them from doing so, he claimed.

Thousands of Brus fled to Tripura in 1997 in the wake of communal tension triggered by the killing of a forest guard by militants inside the Dampa Tiger Reserve.

The Centre and the governments of Mizoram and Tripura have made multiple attempts to repatriate the Brus to their home State since 2009, but majority of them stayed back in the relief camps, citing inadequate rehabilitation package.

The Government has promised to deposit Rs 4 lakh in the bank account of every repatriated family. It has also assured a sum of Rs 1.5 lakh as housing assistance, free rations and Rs 5,000 for other expenses for two years.

The next phase of repatriation is likely to be held in October, the Home Secretary added.

Police sources had earlier said that Bru insurgents have threatened the community members from returning to Mizoram as they plan to escalate their demand for a separate autonomous district council carved out western Mizoram adjoining Bangladesh and Tripura.

The first attempt to repatriate the Brus in November 2009 had fizzled out following the murder of a Mizo youth at Bungthuam village in Mamit district. The murder had also triggered a fresh wave of exodus.

The Bru community, also called Reangs, is among the 21 scheduled tribes in the country. They are scattered across Assam, Mizoram and Tripura. � PTI

Agartala Correspondent adds: A team of Mizoram Government officials, headed by Additional Home Secretary Lalbiyak Sanghi, has begun reverification of bona fide Reang (Bru) refugees lodged in six relief camps at Kanchanpur in Tripura to pave the way for their repatriation.

Sources said the 16-member team had a marathon meeting with SDM, Kanchanpur, Abedhananda Baidya, and briefed him on the Mizoram Government�s plan for reverification of the refugees. They also discussed the repatriation process.

For reverification, the team will visit all the relief camps to corroborate the old lists of refugees identified for the final phase of repatriation.

Sources said that the identity of over 200 families of Bru refugees could not be confirmed during the reverification so far.

To address this problem, a 59-member group of elderly persons from Mizoram will visit the refugee camps to ascertain if the 207 families are actually from Mizoram.

The final leg of repatriation is scheduled to be completed by September 30 when the Centre will stop supply of relief materials to the Bru refugees. The Centre has convened a meeting in Delhi on September 6 to chalk out the final plan for repatriation of the refugees. Representatives from Mizoram, Tripura and the organisations representing the refugees will take part in the meeting.

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Hearing to continue today: Mizoram Home Secy

AIZAWL, Aug 30 - Hearing of claims and objections of 260 displaced Brus, whose names were excluded from the list of Mizoram�s bona fide citizens during an identification process in July, could not be completed as scheduled on Friday and would continue on Saturday, an official said.

Altogether, 26,128 Brus, lodged in six relief camps of neighbouring Tripura, have made it to the list, he said.

Mizoram Home Secretary Lalbiakzama said the hearing of claims and objections began on Tuesday and was scheduled to be concluded on Friday with some officials sent from Mizoram remaining in the relief camps. It would continue on Saturday also as it could not be completed, he said.

Lalbiakzama told this news agency that he has convened a meeting of officials who conducted the hearing in the relief camps on Monday in Aizawl to complete the whole process before the commencement of the physical repatriation.

Of the 350 Brus claiming to be bona fide residents of Mizoram, the cases of over 80 people were settled while over 260 people have to be verified at a hearing in the relief camps.

Mizoram officials, who conducted the second phase of identification of bona fide Mizoram residents in the six Bru relief camps in Tripura during July 3 to July 20 last had identified 26,128 people belonging to 4,278 families in the second phase of identification.

He said that all the identified families expressed willingness to return to Mizoram from the relief camps in Tripura, but �hardliners and anti-repatriation organisations� may dissuade them from doing so, he claimed.

Thousands of Brus fled to Tripura in 1997 in the wake of communal tension triggered by the killing of a forest guard by militants inside the Dampa Tiger Reserve.

The Centre and the governments of Mizoram and Tripura have made multiple attempts to repatriate the Brus to their home State since 2009, but majority of them stayed back in the relief camps, citing inadequate rehabilitation package.

The Government has promised to deposit Rs 4 lakh in the bank account of every repatriated family. It has also assured a sum of Rs 1.5 lakh as housing assistance, free rations and Rs 5,000 for other expenses for two years.

The next phase of repatriation is likely to be held in October, the Home Secretary added.

Police sources had earlier said that Bru insurgents have threatened the community members from returning to Mizoram as they plan to escalate their demand for a separate autonomous district council carved out western Mizoram adjoining Bangladesh and Tripura.

The first attempt to repatriate the Brus in November 2009 had fizzled out following the murder of a Mizo youth at Bungthuam village in Mamit district. The murder had also triggered a fresh wave of exodus.

The Bru community, also called Reangs, is among the 21 scheduled tribes in the country. They are scattered across Assam, Mizoram and Tripura. � PTI

Agartala Correspondent adds: A team of Mizoram Government officials, headed by Additional Home Secretary Lalbiyak Sanghi, has begun reverification of bona fide Reang (Bru) refugees lodged in six relief camps at Kanchanpur in Tripura to pave the way for their repatriation.

Sources said the 16-member team had a marathon meeting with SDM, Kanchanpur, Abedhananda Baidya, and briefed him on the Mizoram Government�s plan for reverification of the refugees. They also discussed the repatriation process.

For reverification, the team will visit all the relief camps to corroborate the old lists of refugees identified for the final phase of repatriation.

Sources said that the identity of over 200 families of Bru refugees could not be confirmed during the reverification so far.

To address this problem, a 59-member group of elderly persons from Mizoram will visit the refugee camps to ascertain if the 207 families are actually from Mizoram.

The final leg of repatriation is scheduled to be completed by September 30 when the Centre will stop supply of relief materials to the Bru refugees. The Centre has convened a meeting in Delhi on September 6 to chalk out the final plan for repatriation of the refugees. Representatives from Mizoram, Tripura and the organisations representing the refugees will take part in the meeting.