AGARTALA: On a visit to Chittagong Hill tracts areas along the Indo-Bangladesh border, Home Minister Rajnath Singh today termed insurgency as the biggest problem facing the Northeastern region and asked militants to shun violence.
"Our government is committed to the development of the Northeast. But insurgency and militancy hamper its progress. Insurgency is the biggest problem facing the Northeastern region," he said addressing a press conference here.
The Home Minister appealed to insurgent groups operating in the Northeast to shun violence and give the region a chance to progress.
"I have assured Tripura government of all cooperation to deal with the issues of insurgency and other security related issues," he said.
Earlier, the Home Minister visited the Indo-Bangladesh border in Tripura and reviewed situation in frontier areas, particularly Chittagong Hill tracts, which is known to be frequented by militants of several insurgent groups of the Northeast.
Accompanied by Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju, the Home Minister interacted with BSF personnel deployed at Khantlang in North Tripura district and took stock of the situation with senior officials.
BSF personnel explained the Home Minister the functioning of monitoring equipments used at the Border Out Posts.
Addressing the BSF jawans, the Home Minister underlined the importance of their presence in border areas and saluted their courage.
"I salute these brave men who stay away from home to perform their national duty. We love our security forces," he said.
In the Chittagong Hill tracts, across the international border, several Northeast militant groups have their bases and training camps, sources said.
The Home Minister also visited Kanchanpur where he interacted with the representatives of Bru refugees living in relief camps in Tripura.
Singh said he wants a respectable solution to the problem of repatriation of over 31,000 displaced Brus who have taken shelter in Tripura for over 17 years.
The Home Minister, who visited the Bru evacuee camps and spoke to the displaced people, said he has spoken to Tripura government and will also hold talks with Mizoram government for their honourable return to that state.
"I assure you that the government will provide all possible help in repatriation of all Bru migrants," he told representatives of the community.
The Home Minister said government was planning 100 per cent repatriation of all Bru refugees to Mizoram and the Centre will provide all assistance to expedite the process.
"I appeal to Mizoram government to provide adequate security to Bru refugees and help them in their rehabilitation," he said.
A 10-point charter of demands was handed over to him by Mizo Bru Displacement Forum representative Bruno Mesha, who demanded Kashmiri Pandit-like status to the Bru evacuees in Tripura.
There are over 31,000 Brus belonging to 5286 families in six evacuee camps in Kanchanpur sub-division of North Tripura district. They had fled their ancestral homes in Mizoram and have been staying here since October 1997.
The Home Ministry has already released funds amounting to Rs 242.35 crore up to 2014-15 for maintenance of Bru migrants living in relief camps.
Singh also held a meeting with Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar in Agartala and reviewed security situation in the state.