Ahead of the Assembly polls next year, the Mizoram Election Commission has requested its Tripura counterpart to expedite the process of enrolling Bru voters into the electoral rolls of the neighbouring state.
The Joint Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) – David Liansanglura Pachuau requested the Tripura election department to hasten the registration of the Bru voters from Mizoram who have relocated in the northeastern state.
Following ethnic tensions triggered by the murder of a Mizo forest officer by the Bru militants in 1997, thousands of Bru voters had migrated to Tripura. Since then, they have spent more than two decades residing in transit camps.
In 2020, the Union government, Mizoram, Tripura and representatives of several Bru organizations had inked a pact, which allowed over 35,000 displaced Bru tribal citizens who were hesitant to return during repatriation to resettle permanently in Tripura.
“I’ve spoken to the additional chief electoral officer (CEO) and assistant CEO in charge of the rehabilitation of Brus just recently and requested them to speed up the enrollment process keeping in mind the elections due next year,” – Pachuau stated.
Altogether 11,759 Bru voters who have been allowed to resettle in Tripura were enrolled in the Mizoram voter list.
Pachuau emphasized that the process of deletion request to the election department was comparatively slow and that there were apparently more than 5,000 Mizoram Brus enrolled in the Tripura voter list.
Names of 1,992 Bru voters, who originally hailed from Mizoram, have been removed from the state voter list so far following their enrolment in the Tripura electoral roll.
The Bru voters originally belonged to nine assembly constituencies in Mizoram, according to Pachuau.