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With no imminent sign of assistance from the central government, the Mizoram government has taken the decision to seek donations from public to support the thousands of internally displaced persons (IDPs) from violence-stricken Manipur who have sought refuge in Mizoram.
According to State Home Secretary H. Lalengmawia, the Executive Committee on Internally Displaced People of Manipur in Mizoram will commence soliciting donations from Monday onwards in order to raise funds for the Manipur IDPs currently residing in the state.

Lalengmawia highlighted that despite the prolonged stay of over 12,000 IDPs in Mizoram, the central government has not yet provided any financial aid or humanitarian assistance. In light of this, the state government has no alternative but to rely on public donations.

At the initial stage, the committee plans to approach ministers, legislators, and senior officials for contributions. Lalengmawia expressed optimism that the state’s Finance Department will promptly release funds, as requested by the Executive Committee, to provide humanitarian aid to the IDPs.

The Chief Minister Zoramthanga had requested financial assistance of Rs 10 crore from the central government on May 23. However, even after 40 days, the allocation of funds is still pending.

Despite grappling with severe fiscal constraints caused by the two-year-long COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown measures, Mizoram has been accommodating over 31,000 refugees from Myanmar due to the military coup earlier this year, as well as 1,006 refugees from Bangladesh, who are all in dire need of humanitarian assistance.

The recent influx of more than 12,000 IDPs from Manipur, who sought shelter in Mizoram due to ethnic conflicts in their home state since May 5, has further compounded the financial woes of the already cash-strapped state.

Zoramthanga emphasized that the state has not received an estimated Rs 3,000 crore from the central government, as projected in the budget, as the central government itself has been severely affected by the pandemic.

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Zoram Chronicle