A large number of people from other states have illegally entered Mizoram and are currently staying in the northeastern state without valid Inner Line Permit (ILP), a senior police officer said on Wednesday.
State Deputy Inspector General of Police (Headquarters) Lalbiakthanga Khiangte said that the Mizoram Police have recently carried out surprise checks in several places during which many non-tribal people have been found staying without valid ILP or violating the conditions of the travel document.
A prolonged failure to conduct ILP checking due to the COVID-19 pandemic could be the reason, the DIG said.
The ILP, a provision of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation of 1873, is an official travel document issued to Indian citizens for entry into protected areas, including Mizoram.
According to the DIG, As many as 124 people were arrested in Aizawl alone for not possessing valid ILPs between April 1 and April 18.
Of the 124 offenders, 85 people were either convicted or pushed back to their native places and the remaining 39 people were released, the police officer said.
The process of issuance of ILP was interrupted in Aizawl after a massive fire damaged the district deputy commissioner’s office in December last year.
Expressing concern over the present situation, the state police in its recent statement reminded ILP holders and sponsors of their responsibilities and duties.
The statement had said that the sponsor is responsible for the good conduct of the permit holder during his/her stay in Mizoram and should ensure that the pass holder is engaged only for the purpose mentioned in the document.
The pass holder should not work under any person other than the sponsor and the permit should be renewed at least seven days before it expires, it had said.
The statement further added that checking of ILP would be conducted at regular intervals to minimise the number of persons staying without permits.
Young Mizo Association (YMA), the largest civil society organisation in the state, has also launched raids across Mizoram to find out ILP violators.