A community displaced 25 years ago still waits for land

Dear reader,

Twenty-five years ago, in 1997, more than 40,000 people belonging to the Bru tribal community fled their homes in Mizoram after a bout of ethnic violence, and took shelter in the neighbouring state of Tripura.

For more than two decades, they stayed in several relief camps in Tripura, struggling without steady water, electricity and drainage, and few options for education and employment. They chose to stay in these conditions over returning to what they saw as unsafe lives back in Mizoram.

After several failed attempts at repatriating the displaced people, in 2020, the Centre announced that it had arrived at a breakthrough four-party agreement to permanently settle the Brus in Tripura. Media trumpeted this as a historic achievement by the government, particularly by Home Minister Amit Shah.

This week, for Common Ground, Sanskrita Bharadwaj travelled to relief and resettlement sites across Tripura to find out if and how the lives of those who had been displaced had improved after the agreement was signed. You can read the story here.

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Ajay Krishnan
Senior Editor

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