Tripura: Joint Movement Committee threaten to intensify against state government

Tripura: Joint Movement Committee threaten to intensify against state government

AGARTALA | SEPT 24, 2020:

The Joint Movement Committee (JMC), a conglomeration of local organisations, on Wednesday threatened to intensify its movement if the state government resettles all displaced Brus from neighbouring Mizoram only in Kanchanpur sub-division of North Tripura district.

JMC Convener Sushanta Bikash Barua said the JMC wants the Brus to be settled in all the eight districts of Tripura instead of only the Kanchanpur sub-division of North Tripura district.

"Government has taken initiative to resettle 4,600 Bru families only in Kanchanpur sub-division and adjoining areas, but we think it would exert tremendous pressure on local non- Bru communities, like Bengalis, Mizos and local tribals living there. We want that the Brus can be settled equally in all the eight districts of Tripura, not only in Kanchanpur sub-division", Barua told reporters.

He said the JMC would launch a strike in the subdivision or would block the national highway-eight which connects Tripura to the rest of the country if the government resettles all the Brus in Kanchanpur sub-division.

The JMC had called for a dawn-to-dusk bandh in the subdivision on Tuesday in support of its demand.

"People have supported our strike spontaneously. If the government goes ahead with its programme of resettling the Brus only in our sub-division, we would launch continuous strike in the sub-division or we would block the national highway for an indefinite period. It would be decided soon," Barua said.

He said the joint movement committee was formed with representatives from Nagorik Suraksha Mancha, a Bengali organisation and Mizo Convention of the Jampui hills in the sub-division and local tribal communities.

The JMC submitted a memorandum to Chief Minister, Biplab Kumar Deb through Sub-divisional Magistrate (SDM), Chandni Chandran on Wednesday and served a seven-day deadline to the government to reconsider its formula, failing which it would intensify its movement.

Bru people from Mizoram started migrating to Kanchanpur sub-division in 1997 following the ethnic conflict with the Mizos over a land dispute and were sheltered in six relief camps at Kanchanpur for the last 23 years.

When several attempts to repatriate the displaced Brus to their land in Mizoram failed, the Centre signed an agreement with the state governments of Tripura and Mizoram and the Bru migrants to resettle them permanently in Tripura instead of providing relief funds and ration for years. The Centre also announced a 600 crore Rupees package for the resettlement.

Mizoram Bru Displaced People's Forum (MBDPF) has claimed that their rehabilitation plan is running into rough weather due to frequent and repetitive agitations by the Joint Movement Committee, even as the government is willing to resettle the Brus.

"We proposed 15 locations for resettlement but rejected 5 so far due to impracticality and future social, cultural and security concerns. The agitations held by the Joint Movement Committee came in the wake of the implementation of the rehabilitation process. We also appeal to the state government to take a firm stand to complete the rehabilitation process", MBDPF general secretary Bruno Msha said.


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