Indian leaders willing to help refugees

New Delhi, July 11:

Indian leaders of different political parties have assured a visiting delegation of the exiled Bhutanese refugees based in Nepal that they will take their issue to court to render all possible help for the refugees’ repatriation.

Delegation head and refugee leader Narad Adhikari told this daily: “Leaders of all parties — both in the government and in the opposition — assured that they will work jointly to help for our repatriation. They also said they would set up a parliamentary committee for the purpose.”

The delegation also asked the Indian leaders to set up the proposed parliamentary committee soon for raising the refugees’ issues in both Houses of the Indian parliament, facilitate the refugees’ free movement in the state of West Bengal and make the refugee issue a trilateral one among Bhutan, Nepal and India.

CPI-M politburo member Sitaram Yechuri convinced that he would take up the issue with Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee, Adhikari said. He said that Yechuri told them he had earlier also spoken to Mukherjee and that the matter was proceeding. NC-D leaders Gopalman Shrestha and Pradip Giri also were present during the meeting.

Congress-I general secretary DP Tripathi has assured of raising the issue with his party high command, said Adhikari.

Meanwhile, chief of the foreign desk of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Surendra Singh Arora, told the delegation that his party will also take up their issue, Adhikari said.