Attention – Due To Allegations of Plagiarism, This Article Is Highly Suspect 

The manna-like bonus for being the most peaceful state has not made Mizoram any peaceful, nor “self sufficient”. The tag, otherwise, peacefully remains. And so does that tag mints money for the state. Even if Mizoram find enough reasons to celebrate that, it should rethink what the state is doing or going through. For many times the Congress who are at the opposition bench have been accusing the MNF led government of harbouring and sheltering all sorts of armed groups in the state. The local medias have also been raising the same issue every now and then. Those are not new, nor sudden. But the inherited image of being peaceful, which is bigger than the reality, overshadowed the peace that is actually in pieces. While the state basked in the fading tag, the pieces gnaw the thin blanket that heaped the peace bonus. The shade is lost as it reveals telling truth that put Zoramthanga and his government on the defensive. But the situation has already reached a point where it cannot just be saved by safer explanation. That would not anywhere change the gravity of the situation that may burst anytime. Once that happens, the state is certain to grope amidst the shambles to adjust, pacify, and accommodate the Frankenstein monsters it raised for itself. What is conceived today is more than the tip of the dormant undercurrent, which have spilled out of the closet that veiled the supposed peace.

The opposition parties strongly came out against the MNF led government in the recently concluded rally under the banner, “Chhanchhuahna Kawngzawh” (March for Salavation) that was held on April 3, 2007 at Aizawl. The CM of Mizoram, Zoramthanga was called “not normal” by the Zoram Nationalist Party chief, Lalduhoma. Lalduhoma also accused the MNF led government for failing to make Mizoram a “self sufficient state.” The MNF led government was blamed for its “policy less government” by the Congress leader and ex –Chief Minister Lalthanhawla.

Brig. T Sailo, former Chief Minister and MPCC president, also said that the MNF led government in Mizoram should be “ashamed” with the repeated “revelations of underground nexus and resign on moral grounds.”

It would be a severe downplay of the grim situation if the rally was to be interpreted merely as a political exercise. With many identity and sub identity movements and assertions swarming the state, the accusation rather hold tight water on the ongoing development within the state. Recently, 6 cadres belonging to the Hmar National Army (HNA) were killed at Tinghmun, Mizoram, which was immediately followed by the Congress legislator, Lalzirliana accusing the MNF led government, particularly the Home department of Mizoram, of having gifted 12 AK 47 assault rifles to an insurgent group during January 2007. The legislator goes to the extent of mentioning the registration number of the vehicle that was used for transporting the arms. The elected representative came under serious warning by the HNA, which is more seriously taken by the Congress party. Moreover, Chief Minister Zoramthanga’s power potent was brought into light with the revelation of the alleged support he received from an armed group during the 2003 general assembly elections. To assume these developments as ambiguous would not serve to erase the negative connotations that have already been drawn by the people of Mizoram.

Mizoram seems to have suddenly woken to the lesson of learning to live with the brokered peace as it has already found itself threatened. Is the state peaceful because several of the armed groups that the MNF government is alleged to be harbouring are under good control?

What would the state be if any succeeding government did not maintain that thread? Is Zoramthanga architecting a win-win situation for himself by banking on armed groups for securing political fights, while he also secure their stay in the “most peaceful state?”

Newslinks, the leading English daily from Mizoram, in one of its editorial said that the MNF party, through Zoramthanga, had close contacts with insurgents from the North East as well as those from Myanmar, which it said, “is a known fact.” The MNF party has also not denied this, but saving itself with the excuse of “facilitating dialogue” with the attempt to bring the underground to overground. How seriously it is doing is for the government to answer.

But when the government could not establish itself a “self sufficient” economy, its selfless efforts to facilitate dialogue by booming the state with armed actors is too big a task for itself at the moment. In the absence of a sound economy, further threatened by Mautam’s (Bamboo flowering) famine, the attempt is seen as an indulged in unneccessary accessories.

It is more so when many of the “dialogueing” groups it is harbouring did not belong to Mizoram. However, the efforts, if it is true, is worth appreciating for obligating the challenge of making peace. But if Zoramthanga is taking the rein unto himself for “facilitating dialogue” with the various armed groups that it is hosting without the knowledge of the government at the Centre, it would serve no one’s interest. If it is facilitating dialogue as it claimed to be, has he bridged any of the armed groups or their interest to the concerned authorities at the Centre? For any of the armed groups in the North East, it would be their last choice to have Zoramthanga or any of the MNF leaders to act as their mediator. Therefore, it is doing more harm than better if Zoramthanga is using them to establish his political playground. Even if the state happens to be peaceful, that does not make the state or Zoramthanga any better actor in peacemaking. The attempt to champion peace merely because its neighbours are declared “disturbed” is not a reason valid for the mission. MNF, once a seperatist group demanding for sovereignty, and today feeding on some bonus scheme from the Government of India, is rather a telling example of power hungry, if not money hungry actor. That alone is good enough for any of the armed groups to see the colour of the MNF led government in upholding their interest. This also becomes the point when the Mizoram public conscience fails to understand Zoramthanga’s extra mile attempt to be the peacemaker. Unfortunately, it has breed too many armed actors within itself. Finding a safe valve for these actors would be Mizoram’s burden anytime in the future. On the other hand, if the historical performance of Mizoram in peacemaking efforts has to exhume and examine, the peace still remains half baked. The accords that it has signed with various armed groups are still awaiting solutions. Assam, Manipur and Nagaland fares better in that respect despite the numerous movements, conflict and unrest they confront. If this is how peace is to be moulded, Zoramthanga is not the potter.Everyone knows the peace brokered is in peril.

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