Over 100 refugees from Myanmar have entered Mizoram over the past few days following a fresh spell of clashes between people in the neighbouring country and its ruling military regime, the Hindustan Times reported, citing the state government.

Officials quoted by The Hindu and the EastMojo in Mizoram districts along the Myanmar border said that the number of refugees who have crossed over could be around 150.

“I have heard that hundreds of people from Myanmar have entered Mizoram in the past few days,” Mizoram Home Minister Lalchamliana said. “But I don’t have the exact figure of how many as I am under quarantine at present.”

Thousands of people, including former leaders of Myanmar, have fled to India since the military took over the country’s government following a coup on February 1.

Last month, the Centre had said in the Rajya Sabha that more than 8,400 Myanmar refugees had crossed over into India since the coup, of which out of which 5,796 had been sent back.

However, state police records showed that at least 9,519 citizens from Myanmar were currently taking refuge across all 11 districts of Mizoram, EastMojo reported. As many as 4,551 refugees – the highest among all districts – were taking shelter in Champhai, according to the police records. Aizawl district had 1,622 refugees, while Lawngtlai had 1,142 of them.

Deputy Commissioner of Hnahthial district, H Dolianbuaia, confirmed that about 60 people had entered the district since Thursday, while his Champhai counterpart Maria CT Zuali said at least 35 refugees had come in from the neighbouring country.

The recent influx from Myanmar was triggered since the National Unity Government, a resistance force formed to resist the military takeover, called for a revolt on Tuesday, Reuters reported.

At least 20 people have been killed in fighting between the military and the National Unity Government. Local media and witnesses said that the military used heavy artillery against local militias during the clashes.

“They fired artillery, they burned down houses in our village,” a resident of the Myin Thar village in Magway region of Central Myanmar told Reuters. He said that three of his children as well as his 17-year-old son, a member of the resistance force, were among those killed.

Myanmar coup

The military coup in Myanmar on February 1 followed the landslide victory of the National League for Democracy and Aung San Suu Kyi in the national elections in November 2020. The military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party performed poorly in its key strongholds.

The country’s military refused to accept the government, citing unsubstantiated allegations of fraud. It was also announced that the coup was a result of the government’s failure to delay the November elections despite the outbreak of Covid-19.

Security forces in Myanmar cracked down heavily on those who agitated against the coup, drawing global criticism. According to Human Rights Watch, security forces in Myanmar have killed more than 900 people and detained over 5,300 activists, journalists and politicians since February.