Rs 600 cr rehabilitation package for Bru resettlement in Tripura, Amit Shah to ink deal today
A Rs 600 crore rehabilitation package has been pledged by the government of India for the resettlement of Brus. A quadripartite agreement will be signed on Thursday by Home Minister Amit Shah.
The signing of the agreement will affect the lives of over 34,000 Brus who had settled in Tripura after several fled ethnic cleansing in Mizoram in 1997.
Other signatories include state governments of Tripura and Mizoram, which will be signed by Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb and his Mizoram counterpart Zoramthanga.
Tripura royal Pradyot Debbarman, who had appealed to the Centre to help rehabilitate the Brus in Tripura instead of Mizoram, is another signatory. He had argued that many Brus were displaced due to the construction of a hydroelectricity project at Tripura’s Dumbur in 1975.
Another set of signatories are Bru NGOs Mizoram Bru Displaced Peoples’ Forum (MBDPF), Mizoram Bru Displaced Peoples’ Coordination Committee (MBDPCC), Mizoram Bru Indigenous Democratic Movement (MBIDM), Bru Tribal Development Society (BTDS), and Bru Displaced Welfare Organisation (BDWO).
Their respective signatories are A Sawibunga (MBDPF), Laldingliana (MBDPCC), Paritosh Chorkhy (MBIDM), Vipin Kumar Reang (BTDS), and Zomdari Reang (BDWO).
Land rights for the displaced Brus will be part of the agreement. In the last round of discussions, the Brus had refused the Center’s offer as land rights were not on the table.
Other guarantees include fixed deposits of Rs 4 lakh for each family, a monthly sum of Rs 5,000 and free monthly ration for the first two years and schools in all cluster villages.
It is unlikely that an autonomous development council, on the lines of the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC), will be agreed upon.
The agreement will be a breakthrough in the 22-year-old impasse. In the last decade, the government of India has made over nine attempts to repatriate the Brus. Last year, among the 4,477 families who were recognised as displaced people, 289 families were repatriated in Mizoram.