Agartala, May 23: Serious resentment among people was brewing over resettlement of Bru Reangs in different parts of the State. Considering the history of Bru refugees’ agitations and aggressive overtures on issues, particularly relating to repatriation, and conflicts with locals people of different areas seemed wary of at the thought of their presence in the neighbourhood. They were vehemently opposing re-settlement of these migrated people in their localities.
The aggressive agitations and road blockades in Kanchanpur some months ago appeared to have caused serious damage to their image. “They have a knack for creating troubles with people in their neighbourhood. As refugees, a section of these people were involved in almost all sorts of anti-social activities. During CAA protest in December last, they were behind all the violence and looting, they caused displacement of the locals who had been residents of the localities for ages.. We shall not allow them in our areas”, a resident of Ichabpur area in Kailashahar commented. Similar allegations came from residents of Dasda and Jampui hills in North District.
Notably, a meeting was held at SDM office in Kanchanpur on May 19 last in
connection with visiting proposed sites for Migrated Bru re-settlement.
Total 12 land sites spread across North, Unakoti, Dhalai, Khowai, West and Sepahijala districts were proposed for re-settlement. What intrigued and then trigger anger was that administration had included
only Bru representatives – without considering inclusion of local people of respective areas – in the site verification process. Such exclusion further complicated the issue. The exercise started from May 21 last.
Mizo organizations in Tripura and Nagarik Suraksha Manch had been opposing re-settlement of Bru people in Kanchanpur sub-division and anywhere around Jampui hills since the day government announced decision to keep them here instead of sending back to Mizoram.
Despite repeated objections of these organizations, administration had reportedly included Dasda, Anandabazar and Vanghmun as proposed sites for re-settlement.
“From the start, we the people of Jampui Hills (Mizo Convention) and people of Kanchanpur (Nagarik Suraksha Manch) have been sidelined
and excluded in the process”, a Mizo Convention leaders alleged.
Reacting sharply, general secretary of Mizo Convention, Zairemthiama
Pachuau said, “Initially we were not informed or aware of the government’s
intention to settle the Mizoram Brus within Jampui Hill RD Block area Actually that’s the assurance given to us by the government- not to settle them ‘near’ our Jampui Hill traditional boundary. Sadly, taking advantage of many restrictions of Covid19 lockdown period the government has been diligently working on the settlement process”.
He alleged, “We are convinced that the DCM and the RI of Kanchanpur
subdivision, both belonging to Bru community have been responsible for most of the ground works and decision formation. They have been using their positions in the government to play communal card. We demand stern actions against them, and their transfer out of their current postings”.
“If the Mizoram Brus are settled within Jampui Hill RD Block without taking us into confidence, the immediate and long term consequences will be disastrous for all stakeholders,” warned Dr Pachuau.
Meanwhile, Nagarik Suraksha Manch also raised strong objection to proposed settlement of displaced Brus in Kanchanpur sub-division. The Manch submitted a memorandum in which Manch pointed out categorically reasons behind opposing Government’s move to resettlement of Brus. Manch leaders demanded that migrated Brus should be rehabilitated in all sub-divisions of Tripura with equal distribution. The idea was not to give them any compact areas as it , as many of the Mizo and Nagarik Mancha leaders felt, would give the Brus tools to demand ‘councils’ exclusively for them in future- one of the main
reasons for their forceful displacement from Mizoram which would again play detrimental to the unity and harmony of the Tripura tribals and non tribals.
“It is obvious from the prevailing situation that, the way administration is proceeding for rehabilitation; it would lead to serious chaos threatening peace and tranquility”, Manch and Mizo leaders opined. (courtesy: Tripura Times)