AIZAWL, August 10: Fifty-three years after a movement was launched in present-day Mizoram to seek independence from India, Mizo ‘soldiers’ of a former militant outfit were honoured at a government programme here.
A total of 138 ‘soldiers’ of the erstwhile Mizo National Army were awarded for their valour at the event on Thursday. Sixty-one of them were awarded posthumously. Titled as ‘Meet the Heroes: Peace Pays’, the event was organised to “commemorate Mizo Hnam Sipai, Mizo soldiers, who during the fight for independence, journeyed to China to undergo training and procure weapons”.
The programme was organised by the tourism department of Mizoram Government, led by Mizo National Front. The development assumes significance as the celebration by the Mizoram Government was held in partnership with the ministry of tribal affairs and North Eastern Council of the ministry of DoNER.
Speaking as the chief guest, Mizoram CM Zoramthanga said, “The Mizo National Army, who were once considered as lawless elements by the country, are now being honoured. It is significant that even this programme is being sponsored by the Indian government. Their names are no longer spoken in hushed tones.”
Song, drama performances and speeches from representatives of the delegates from China also marked the programme. (PTI)