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BNLF prod to repatriation

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By OUR CORRESPONDENT in Aizawl
  • Published 4.10.05
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Aizawl, Oct. 4: The surrendered Bru National Liberation Front (BNLF) in a memorandum to the Union home ministry has demanded the repatriation of 35,000 Brus who fled Mizoram following the insurgency of the Bru Liberation Force of Mizoram.

In the memorandum, the BNLF urged the home ministry to facilitate the return of the Bru refugees as they can ?cause hindrance to the Mizoram government-BNLF peace accord.?.

Following the peace agreement with the Zoramthanga government, the BNLF laid down arms but the BLFM is still carrying out underground activities like kidnapping, robbery and extortion, thereby jeopardising the safety of Bru refugees in North Tripura.

?In view of the situation, it is necessary that the Bru refugees be repatriated as soon as possible,? the BNLF said. The BNLF also accused the BLFM of getting assistance from the Tripura-based underground group National Liberation Front of Tripura, the source said.

While the BNLF claimed that the number of Bru refugees was 35,000, the Mizoram government refused to accept the claim. ?There is a number conflict here, as the Mizoram government is taking the initiative to repatriate only the bonafide citizens of Mizoram,? the source said.

The memo also mentioned that the Brus at Sidon transit camp were apprehensive following the Mizoram government announcement that ration would be supplied to the camps for only three months. The home ministry was also urged to sanction funds for special development schemes provided in the peace agreement.

?Funds for rehabilitation of the BNLF have been handed over to the DoNER, but the Mizoram government is yet to receive the money,? former BNLF general secretary Solomon Prophul was quoted as saying.

The Mizoram government was reluctant to give ex gratia to those who died outside Mizoram and not at the hands of Mizoram police. However, the BNLF has been insisting that ex gratia be given to all, whether or not their cadres died at the hands of Mizoram police.

The source added that all the 16 BNLF members who had lost their lives had died at the hands of security forces.