Around 7,500 people had fled to Mizoram from the violence-torn state of Manipur.
An official claimed 7,527 ethnic Zos, known as Kukis in Manipur, had crossed into Mizoram.
They have sought refuge in eight districts throughout the state. According to the official, Kolasib has the most displaced individuals (2,685), followed by Aizawl (2,386) and Saitual (2,153).
According to him, 164 individuals have sought refuge in the Champhai district, 36 in the Khawzawl district, 27 in the Serchhip district, 19 in the Mamit district, and 57 in the Lunglei district. He noted that the displaced persons are being housed in temporary relief camps, while many more have been offered refuge by families.
Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga stated that one of the major goals of the founders of his Mizo National Front (MNF) was to unite all ethnic Zo tribes in India and bring them under one governmental authority. Zoramthanga's declaration came on the heels of a demand by Manipur's 10 Kuki MLAs for a separate government for the state's hill territories.
One of the MNF's demands was the union of Zo-inhabited areas of states around Mizoram into a single administrative body known as "Greater Mizoram," Zoramthanga told party activists on Friday.
He said that issue was broached during peace discussions with the Centre, which stated that it could be done under Article 3 of the Constitution. He did, however, state that Mizoram cannot actively intervene in Manipur's internal matters. "That initiative should be taken by our kindred brothers in Manipur, as the issue of unification of the Chin-Kuki-Mizo-Hmar-Zomo tribes should not be imposed," he stated. Mizoram and Manipur share a 95-kilometre boundary. Kukis, who have ethnic and cultural links with the Mizos, live in the hill parts of Manipur that border Mizoram.
On May 3, violence erupted in Manipur after a 'Tribal Solidarity March' was held across the state's ten hill districts to oppose the Meitei community's desire for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
Meiteis make up around 53 per cent of Manipur's population and dwell mostly in the Imphal valley. Tribals (Nagas and Kukis) make up another 40% of the population and dwell in the hill areas.
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