More than 700 Myanmar nationals have taken refuge in Mizoram in past few weeks: Police



AIZAWL: Over 700 people from Myanmar, mostly civilians, have entered Mizoram in the past few weeks, a police officer said on Sunday.

He said that the new entrants who made their way to Mizoram were mostly civilians, including pregnant women, children, and senior citizens.

Altogether 10,025 nationals of the neighbouring country have so far sneaked into Mizoram following the military coup in Myanmar in February, he said.

At least 22 members of the Myanmar parliament are among those who have taken refuge in the state, the police officer said.

The Chief Minister of Myanmar’s Chin state, Salai Lian Luai, had crossed over to Mizoram on June 14, he said.

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The officer said that a sizeable number of Myanmarese refugees have already returned to their country.

Quoting data of the state police, the officer said, 195 people from Myanmar have entered Champhai district between June 15 and June 26.

Of the 11 districts in Mizoram, the Myanmar nationals are living in 10 districts with the border district Champhai alone housing 4,352 people of the neighbouring country, he said.

As many 1,621 people from Myanmar have taken shelter in a community housing complex in Aizawl, it said.

Meanwhile, an official, who did not wish to be named, said that Myanmar nationals especially from the Chin state have entered Indian territory in small batches at regular interval since February.

Many of the Myanmar nationals who entered Mizoram recently could be not be prevented even by security forces because most of them were women, children, and senior citizens, she said.

Meanwhile, MC Lalramenga, president of Tuipuiral group of Young Mizo Association (YMA) in Champhai district told PTI that two makeshift camps are being erected on the outskirts of Zawlsei village, about 20 km from the Myanmar border.

The makeshift camps are being set up by YMA volunteers to give shelter to people from Myanmar on humanitarian grounds.

A refugee camp will also be constructed by villagers at Farkawn and Vaphai villages, he said.

There are 21 villages within the jurisdiction of the Tuipuiral group of YMA, which falls under the East Tuipui assembly constituency in Champhai district.

Presently, 1,419 Myanmar nationals have taken shelter at 20 villages in Tuipuiral area, according to Lalramenga.

A sizeable number of Myanmar nationals are also camping along the Tiau river on the Mizoram side of the international border as they have been asked not to enter the north-eastern state due to the pandemic, the police officer said.

Six Mizoram districts- Champhai, Siaha, Lawngtlai, Serchhip, Hnahthial, and Saitual share a 510-km-long international border with Myanmar.

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