Newmai News Network
Imphal, Oct 11: Displaced people staying in a relief camp in Imphal on Wednesday raised their strong objection to the government’s plan of shifting them to prefabricated houses for temporary shelters.
“Instead of staying at the temporary shelter, we would like to go and settle at our original places. We would rather die in our homes,” said the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) staying at a government-opened relief camp in Imphal’s Khuman Lampak.
Around 200 displaced people from Ekou, Dolaithabi and its adjoining villages of Imphal East district bordering Kangpokpi are staying at the relief camp after their houses were torched by armed miscreants after the outbreak of ethnic violence in the state on the evening of May 3 last.
Earlier, they stayed at different relief camps and they shifted to a relief camp at Khuman Lampak under the initiative of the Imphal East district administration.
Talking to reporters at the relief camp today, the IDPs said that their houses were burnt down by armed miscreants who descended from the hills on the night of May 3.
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Earlier, they stayed at NB College in Khundrakpam and other relief camps opened by the local youth clubs and civil society organisations.
They were later shifted to the relief camp opened by the Imphal East district administration at Khuman Lampak. A total of 194 people of 46 families are staying in the camp as of now.
One of the IDPs, Longjam Basanta said that they heard that the state government is planning to shift them to prefabricated houses for temporary shelters constructed by the state government at Swombung in Imphal East district.
“We don’t want to shift to temporary houses. Rather we would like to return to our own original home,” he said, urging the state government to make arrangements for the same.
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At the same time, he said that they are not getting any kind of relief package or compensation which the government assured them till date.
He said that the authorities of the state government assured providing loan amount of Rs 50,000 to each affected families, LPG gas connection free of cost, etc. and to avail the benefits, they have done all the necessary processes.
However, any kind of relief assistance or compensation for the damages caused by the violence is yet to be received, he lamented.
He also said that they will not move from their present shelter at any condition. If the government forces them to shift to the temporary shelter houses, they will move to their villages.
The IDPs also expressed their worry about the study of their children who had enrolled in various schools nearby and said that shifting to other places from the present centre will greatly affect the academic careers of their children. As such, they would like to stay at the present place until the current academic session is over.
Mention may be made that the state government has begun the process of handing over prefabricated temporary shelter houses to the violence-affected displaced families with handing over of around 400 temporary shelter houses in Sajiwa jail premises of Imphal East district in August last.
Over 50,000 displaced people are taking shelter at over 350 relief camps across the state and the state government is planning or constructing prefabricated temporary shelter houses in different districts affected by the ethnic violence.