Mizoram

Mizoram

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Mizoram is one of the Seven Sister States
Seven Sister States
The Seven Sister States also called "Paradise Unexplored" is a name given to the contiguous states of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland & Tripura in northeastern India. These states cover an area of about 250,000 sq. km. or about 7 percent of India's total area. They...

 in North Eastern
North-East India
Northeast India refers to the easternmost region of India consisting of the contiguous Seven Sister States, Sikkim, and parts of North Bengal...

 India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

, sharing borders with the states of Tripura
Tripura
Tripura is a state in North-East India, with an area of . It is the third smallest state of India, according to area. Tripura is surrounded by Bangladesh on the north, south, and west. The Indian states of Assam and Mizoram lie to the east. The capital is Agartala and the main languages spoken are...

, Assam, Manipur
Manipur
Manipur is a state in northeastern India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. Manipur is bounded by the Indian states of Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south and Assam to the west; it also borders Burma to the east. It covers an area of...

 and with the neighbouring countries of Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

 and Burma. Mizoram became the 23rd state of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 on 20 February 1987. Its capital is Aizawl
Aizawl
Aizawl is the capital of the state of Mizoram in India. With a resident population 228,280 , it is the largest city within the state. It is also the center of all important government offices, state assembly house and civil secretariat...

. Mizoram is located in the northeast of India. They are found in northwestern Myanmar, northeastern India and Bangladesh. Anthropologists classify them as Tibeto-Burman speaking member of the Mongoloid race.

Climate


Mizoram has a mild climate, comfortable in summer 20 °C to 29 °C (68 °F to 84 °F) and never freezing during winter, with temperatures from 11 °C to 21 °C (52 °F to 70 °F). The region is influenced by monsoon
Monsoon
Monsoon is traditionally defined as a seasonal reversing wind accompanied by corresponding changes in precipitation, but is now used to describe seasonal changes in atmospheric circulation and precipitation associated with the asymmetric heating of land and sea...

s, raining heavily from May to September with little rain in the dry (cold) season. The average state rainfall is 254 cm (100 in.), per annum. In the capital, Aizawl
Aizawl
Aizawl is the capital of the state of Mizoram in India. With a resident population 228,280 , it is the largest city within the state. It is also the center of all important government offices, state assembly house and civil secretariat...

  rainfall is about 208 centimetres (82 in.) and in Lunglei
Lunglei
Lunglei is a town, situated in the south-central part of Mizoram state, northeastern India. Lunglei, sometimes spelled Lungleh, literally meaning 'bridge of rock' got its name from a bridge like rock found in the riverine area around Nghasih - a small tributary of the river Tlawng...

 another major center about 350 centimetres (138 in.)

Geography


Mizoram is a land of rolling hills, valleys, rivers and lakes. As many as 21 major hills ranges or peaks of different heights run through the length and breadth of the state, with plains scattered here and there. The average height of the hills to the west of the state are about 1,000 metres (3,281 feet). These gradually rise up to 1,300 metres (4,265 feet) to the east. Some areas, however, have higher ranges which go up to a height of over 2,000 metres (6,562 feet). Phawngpui Tlang also known as the Blue Mountain, situated in the south-eastern part of the state, is the highest peak in Mizoram at 2,210 metres (7,251 feet).

The biggest river in Mizoram is Chhimtuipui, also known as Kaladan. It originates in Chin State in Burma and passes through Saiha and Lawngtlai districts in the Southern tip of Mizoram, goes back to Burma's Rakhine state, and finally enters the Bay of Bengal at Akyab, which is a very popular port in Sittwe
Sittwe
-Economy:In February 2007, India announced a plan to develop the port, which would enable ocean access from Indian Northeastern states, so called "Seven sisters", like Mizoram, via the Kaladan River....

, Burma. The Indian government has invested millions of rupees to set up inland water ways along this river to trade with Burma. The project is known as the Kaladan Multipurpose project. Although many more rivers and streams drain the hill ranges, the most important and useful rivers are the Tlawng, Tut, Tuirial and Tuivawl which flow through the northern territory and eventually join the Barak River
Barak River
The Barak River is one of the major rivers of southern Assam and is a part of the Surma-Meghna River System. It is the biggest and the most important of all the rivers in the Manipur hill territory, from where it originates....

 in Cachar District
Cachar District
Cachar is an administrative district in the state of Assam in India.-Etymology:The name "Cachar" has derived from the words 'kacha' & 'har'.The district headquarters are located at Silchar...

. The Chhimtuipui which originates in Burma, is an important river in the south of Mizoram. It has four tributaries and the river is in patches. The western part is drained by (Khawthlang tuipui) and its tributaries. A number of important towns, including Chittagong
Chittagong
Chittagong ) is a city in southeastern Bangladesh and the capital of an eponymous district and division. Built on the banks of the Karnaphuli River, the city is home to Bangladesh's busiest seaport and has a population of over 4.5 million, making it the second largest city in the country.A trading...

 in Bangladesh, are situated at the mouth of the river. Before Independence, access to other parts of the country was only possible through the river routes via Cachar in the north, and via Chittagong in the south. Entry through the latter was cut off when the subcontinent was partitioned and ceded to East Pakistan
East Pakistan
East Pakistan was a provincial state of Pakistan established in 14 August 1947. The provincial state existed until its declaration of independence on 26 March 1971 as the independent nation of Bangladesh. Pakistan recognized the new nation on 16 December 1971. East Pakistan was created from Bengal...

 (now Bangladesh) in 1947.

The Palak lake, the biggest in Mizoram is situated in Saiha District which is part of southern Mizoram covering 30 hectares (74 acres). It is believed that the lake was created as a result of an earthquake or a flood. The local people believe that a village which was submerged still remains intact deep under the waters. The Tamdil lake is a natural lake situated 85 km (52.8 mi) from Aizawl. Legend has it that a huge mustard plant
Mustard plant
Mustards are several plant species in the genera Brassica and Sinapis whose small mustard seeds are used as a spice and, by grinding and mixing them with water, vinegar or other liquids, are turned into the condiment known as mustard or prepared mustard...

 once stood in this place. When the plant was cut down, jets of water sprayed from the plant and created a pool of water, thus the lake was named Ţamdil which means of 'Lake of Mustard Plant'. Today the lake is an important tourist attraction and a holiday resort. The most significant lake in Mizo history Rih Dil is ironically located in Burma, a few kilometres from the India-Burma border. It was believed that the departed souls pass through this lake before making their way to Pialral or heaven.

Geology and minerals


The folded structure of the Mizoram ranges are at the junction of two moving tectonic plates(Indian and Burmese Desi Kachar 1974). On 19 April 2011 there was a 4.3 earthquake about 10 km North of Kolasib and a 6.4 was recorded on 4 February 2011. Mizoram is in the highest zone 5 for earthquakes.

The folded hilly or mountainous North South belts, with perpendicular faults, comprise sediments of the Surma (Middle Bhuban Formation), Barail and Tipam groups. There is Aluvium in river beds consisting of deposits of argillaceous and arenaceous sandstones, shale, siltstones and mudstones and greywacke. A 560m thick rock succession of the Middle Bhuban type exposed between Bawngkawn and Durtlang shows 7 normal and 7 reverse magneto strata (North and South pole reversals) showing its age to be around 20 Million years old. The rock system is generally weak, unstable, weathered and prone to seismic and weather influence producing landslides. The soft, black to grey rock is used locally for building materials and for low trafficked road construction work. There are no useful minerals of economic significance apart from clays in the River Tlawng beds. Typical soils are sandy loam, clay loam that have been heavily leached due to the high slopes leaving it porous and lacking in minerals or humus.

A number of oil and gas exploration activities have taken place due the geological condition with which Mizoram has been formed, leading to the possibilities and high expectation that reserves would be confirmed. France, Russia and Cyprus as well as several Indian companies have already signed a 12% oil and 10% gas royalty arrangement with proceeds going direct to Mizoram state on any production (April 2009)

History



The origin of the Mizo people, like those of many other tribes in the northeastern India, is shrouded in mystery. Mizo history in the 18th and 19th century is marked by many instances of tribal raids and head hunting led by the village chieftains. The Lushai Hills Autonomous District Council was formed in 1952 and it led to the abolition of chieftainship.The autonomy however only partially met the aspirations of the Mizo people so representatives of the District Council and the Mizo Union
Mizo Union
Mizo Union, a political party in Mizoram, north-eastern India. Founded on April 6, 1946 as the Mizo Common People's Union. At the time of Indian independence in 1947 Mizo Union was the major political force in the Lushai Hills...

 pleaded with the States Reorganization Commission (SRC) in 1954 for integrating the Mizo-dominated areas of Tripura
Tripura
Tripura is a state in North-East India, with an area of . It is the third smallest state of India, according to area. Tripura is surrounded by Bangladesh on the north, south, and west. The Indian states of Assam and Mizoram lie to the east. The capital is Agartala and the main languages spoken are...

 and Manipur
Manipur
Manipur is a state in northeastern India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. Manipur is bounded by the Indian states of Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south and Assam to the west; it also borders Burma to the east. It covers an area of...

 with the District Council in Assam. The tribal leaders in the northeast were unhappy with the final SRC recommendations and met in Aizawl in 1955 to form a new political party, Eastern India Tribal Union (EITU). This group raised their demand for a separate state comprising all the hill districts of Assam. The demand for a separate Hill state by EITU was kept in abeyance.

Independence movement


There was little development in the state and many people were in hardship including food shortages. The Mizo National Famine Front dropped the word 'famine' and a new political organisation, the Mizo National Front
Mizo National Front
Mizo National Front is a regional political party in Mizoram, India. MNF emerged out of the Mizo National Famine Front, which was formed by Pu Laldenga to protest against the inaction of the Indian central government towards the famine situation in the Mizo areas of the Assam state in 1959. It...

 (MNF) was born on 22 October 1961 under the leadership of Laldenga with the specified goal of achieving sovereign independence of Mizoram. Large scale insurgency
March 1966 Mizo National Front uprising
The March 1966 Mizo National Front uprising was a revolt against the Government of India, aimed at establishing a sovereign state for the Mizos. On 1 March 1966, the Mizo National Front made a declaration of independence, after launching coordinated attacks on the Government offices and security...

 broke out on 28 February 1966 at the government installations at Aizawl, Lunglei, Chawngte, Chhimluang and other places and the Government of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 responded militarily. This was the first time that India had used its air force to quell a movement of any kind among its citizens.“In the afternoon of 4 March 1966, jet fighters attacked Aizawl. The next day, a more excessive bombing took place for several hours which left most houses in Dawrpui and Chhinga veng area in ashes,” recollected 62-year-old Rothangpuia in Aizawl. The Mizo National Front was outlawed in 1967 and the demand for statehood increased. The Mizo District Council delegation met prime minister Indira Gandhi
Indira Gandhi
Indira Priyadarshini Gandhara was an Indian politician who served as the third Prime Minister of India for three consecutive terms and a fourth term . She was assassinated by Sikh extremists...

 in May 1971 and demanded full fledged statehood for Mizoram. The Indian government offered to convert the Mizo Hills into a Union Territory (U.T.) in July 1971. The Mizo leaders accepted on the condition that Statehood occurred sooner rather than later.

Founding of Mizoram state


Rajiv Gandhi
Rajiv Gandhi
Rajiv Ratna Gandhi was the sixth Prime Minister of India . He took office after his mother's assassination on 31 October 1984; he himself was assassinated on 21 May 1991. He became the youngest Prime Minister of India when he took office at the age of 40.Rajiv Gandhi was the elder son of Indira...

's election to power following his mother's death signalled the beginning of a new era in Indian politics. Laldenga met the prime minister on 15 February 1985. Some contentious issues which could not be resolved during previous talks were referred to him for his advice. With Pakistan
Pakistan
Pakistan , officially the Islamic Republic of Pakistan is a sovereign state in South Asia. It has a coastline along the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in the south and is bordered by Afghanistan and Iran in the west, India in the east and China in the far northeast. In the north, Tajikistan...

 having lost control of Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

 and no support from Pakistan, the Mizo National Front
Mizo National Front
Mizo National Front is a regional political party in Mizoram, India. MNF emerged out of the Mizo National Famine Front, which was formed by Pu Laldenga to protest against the inaction of the Indian central government towards the famine situation in the Mizo areas of the Assam state in 1959. It...

 which had evolved from the Mizo National Famine Front after the great famine of 1958 used the opportunity that had now presented itself. New Delhi felt that the Mizo issue had been dragging on for a long time, while the Mizo National Front was convinced that disarming, to live as respectable Indian citizens, was the only way of achieving peace and development. Statehood was a prerequisite to the implementation of the accord signed between the Mizo National Front and the Union Government on 30 June 1986. The document was signed by Pu Laldenga
Pu Laldenga
Pu Laldenga was Chief Minister of Mizoram state in North-eastern India from 1986 till 1988. Prior to that he had led the secessionist Mizo National Front from 1960 until its disbanding following Mizo accord with Rajiv Gandhi in 1986.-Early years:...

 on behalf of the Mizo National Front, and the Union Home Secretary R.D. Pradhan on behalf of the government. Lalkhama, Chief Secretary of Mizoram, also signed the agreement. The formalisation of the state of Mizoram took place on 20 February 1987. Chief Secretary Lalkhama read out the proclamation of statehood at a public meeting organised at Aizawl's parade ground. Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi flew in to Aizawl to inaugurate the new state. Hiteshwar Saikia was appointed as Governor of Mizoram.

Demographics


Details are shown in the figures.

Sociology


The great majority of Mizoram's population is several ethnic tribes who are either culturally or linguistically linked. These ethnic groups are collectively known as Mizos (Mi= People, Zo= Hill). One should note that 'Mizo' is a generic term which denotes a particular group of hillmen who are closely linked culturally and linguistically. Moreover these group of people of hillmen share close physical similarities. There is an increasing unity among Mizo tribes who are spread throughout the northeastern states of India, Burma and Bangladesh. The Mizos are divided into numerous tribes, however, to name a particular tribe as the largest would be an unreliable task as no concrete census has ever been undertaken till date. In order to better understand the Mizos, a substantial knowledge and understanding of the various Mizo Tribes (Tribes who fall under the term Mizo) is a requirement. The Mizos include Hmar, Lushei, Paite, Lai, Mara etc. and a few among others. These tribes are divided into numerous clans within themselves, and these clans are further sub-divided into sub-clans, for example the Hmars are divided into Thiek, Lungtau, Darngawn, Khawbung, Zote etc. These clans sometimes have slight liguistics differences. The Bru(Riang), a sub-tribe of Tripuri and the Chakma
Chakma people
The Chakmas , also known as the Changhma , are a community that inhabits the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh and the North-East India. The Chakmas are the largest ethnic group in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, making up more than half the tribal population. Chakmas are divided into 46 clans or...

 of Arakanese
Rakhine people
The Rakhine , is a nationality in Myanmar forming the majority along the coastal region of present day Rakhine State or Arakan State. They possibly constitute 5.53% or more of Myanmar's total population but no accurate census figures exist. Rakhine people also live in the southeastern parts of...

 origin, are a non-Mizo tribe living in Mizoram. The Mizo people usually suffix their descriptive given names with their tribe.

Music



Mizo traditional tunes are very soft and gentle, with locals claiming that they can be sung the whole night without the slightest fatigue. The guitar is a popular instrument and Mizos enjoy country style music. Within the church services are drums, commonly used and known locally as "khuang". The "Khuang" is made from wood and animal hide and are often beaten enough to instigate a trance like state with worshipers as they dance in a circular fashion. Mizos enjoy singing and even without musical instruments, they enthusiastically sing together, clapping hands or by using other rhythmic methods. Informal instruments are called chhepchher. The early Mizos were close to nature and music is still an essential part of the cultural life. Whilst gospel music remains an integral part of Mizo culture, Western influence is evident from the contemporary music scene as young people experiment with rock, metal, rap, pop and hip-hop. A new style of music was founded by Vanlalhminglema called the Zozic as dubbed by the locals of Mizoram it combines most of the western modern music with a blend of major Mizo traditional styles. The Zozic is traditionally played using modern day electrical instruments like the guitar, etc.

Festivals


Young Mizos are leaving traditional customs and adopting new ways of life which are greatly influenced by Western culture. Christmas is probably the biggest festival and local communities contribute towards large feasts, typically organised by nearby churches, where many hundreds in a local community would eat together. Traditional Mizo social gatherings revolve around the agricultural calendar.

Mim Kut


The Mim Kut festival is usually celebrated during the months of August and September, after the harvest of maize. Mim Kut is celebrated with great fanfare by (illegally) drinking rice-beer, singing, dancing, and feasting. Samples of the year's harvests are consecrated to the departed souls of the community.

Chapchar Kut


Chapchar Kut is another festival celebrated during March after completion of their most arduous task of Jhum operation i.e., jungle-clearing (clearing of the remnants of burning). This is a spring festival celebrated with great fervour and gaiety.

Pawl Kut


Pawl means “Straw” hence pawl kut means a straw harvest festival. It is typically celebrated in December and is another important festival.

Cheraw


The most colourful and distinctive dance of the Mizo is called Cheraw. Long bamboo staves are a feature of this dance and it is known to many as the Bamboo Dance. Originally, the dance was performed to wish a safe passage and victorious entry into the abode of the dead (Pialral) for the soul of a mother who had died in childbirth. To dance Cheraw takes great skill and alertness. On 12 March 2010 Mizoram also sets Guinness World Records with a 10-minute performance of its famous Cheraw "Bamboo Dance", featuring 10,736 participants in 671 groups.

Khuallam


Khuallam was originally a dance performed by honoured guests while entering into the village arena where a community feast was held. To attain a position of distinction, a Mizo traditionally underwent a series of ceremonies and performed the dance before the guests. Khuallam is a group dance performed in colourful dress to the tune of gongs and drums.

Chheih Lam


Chheih Lam is the dance done over a round of rice-beer in the cool of the evening. The lyrics in triplets are usually spontaneous compositions, recounting their heroic deeds and escapades and also praising the honoured guests present in their midst.

Mizo life


The fabric of social life in the Mizo society has undergone tremendous change over the last few years. Previously the village and the clan formed units of Mizo society. The Mizo code of ethics or dharma
Dharma
Dharma means Law or Natural Law and is a concept of central importance in Indian philosophy and religion. In the context of Hinduism, it refers to one's personal obligations, calling and duties, and a Hindu's dharma is affected by the person's age, caste, class, occupation, and gender...

 focused on "Tlawmngaihna", an untranslatable term meaning that it was the obligation of all members of society to be hospitable, kind, unselfish, and helpful to others. Tlawmngaihna to a Mizo stands for that compelling moral force which finds expression in self-sacrifice for the service of others. The old belief, Pathian, is still used to mean God. Mizos often gather together to help in disaster management like landslides or famine.

Mizos are a close-knit society with no class distinction and no sexual discrimination. 90% of them are cultivators and the village functions as a large family. Birth, marriage, and death in the village are important occasions and the whole village would typically become involved. In time of death, the whole local community, as well as all family members of the deceased, mourn together, in the residence of the deceased. This particular process of mourning together lasts anywhere from a few weeks to over 3 months.

There are a few community establishments in urban centres that frequently arrange various social events, musical concerts, comedy shows, reality TV shows, discussion groups, and scientific or technological conferences. However, generally speaking the region is lacking in Western-style social meeting establishments. Much of the social life often revolves around church. An active church life is perhaps one of the reasons why Mizos are such a tight-knit community.

Media and communication


Mizoram’s media is growing quickly. Internet access is average, and private television cable channels are popular. Doordarshan
DoorDarshan
Doordarshan is an Indian public service broadcaster, a division of Prasar Bharati. It is one of the largest broadcasting organizations in India in terms of the infrastructure of studios and transmitters. Recently, it has also started Digital Terrestrial Transmitters. On September 15, 2009,...

, the national television service of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

 provides terrestrial broadcasting services and All India Radio
All India Radio
All India Radio , officially known since 1956 as Akashvani , is the radio broadcaster of India and a division of Prasar Bharati. Established in 1936, it is the sister service of Prasar Bharati's Doordarshan, the national television broadcaster. All India Radio is one of the largest radio networks...

 broadcasts programs related to the indigenous culture and local news. Broadband access is available.

Languages


Mizo
Mizo language
The Mizo language is natively spoken by Mizo people in Mizoram, a state in the Indian Union; Chin State of Burma and in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh. The language is also known as Lushai , as Lusei people are the first clan who have an external exposure...

 is the official language but English, being important for education, administration, formalities and governance is widely used. The Mizo community is an amalgam of several indigenous tribes who have unique identities and distinctive dialects. The Duhlian dialect, also known as the Lusei was the first language of Mizoram and has come to be known as the Mizo language. The language is mixed with other dialects like the Mara
Mara people
The Mara people are a recognised scheduled tribe in India, native to northeastern India, primarily in the Mara Autonomous District Council of the state of Mizoram, where they form the majority of the population. Significant numbers of Maras are also found living south-eastern part of Burma, in Chin...

, Lai
Lai
A lai is a lyrical, narrative poem written in octosyllabic couplets that often deals with tales of adventure and romance.Lais were mainly composed in France and Germany, during the 13th and 14th centuries. A Provençal term for a similar kind of poem is descort.The English term lay is a...

 and Hmar
Hmar
Hmar is the name of one of the numerous mizo/kuki/chin tribes of India, spread over a large area in the northeast. The Hmars belong to the Chin-Kuki-Mizo group of tribes, and are recognised as Scheduled Tribe under the 6th Schedule of the Constitution of India. Literally, Hmar means North or...

. Christian missionaries developed the Mizo script. Writing is a combination of the Roman script and Hunterian
William Wilson Hunter
Sir William Wilson Hunter KCSI CIE was a Scottish historian, statistician, a compiler and a member of the Indian Civil Service, who later became Vice President of Royal Asiatic Society.-Early life and education:...

 transliteration methodology with prominent traces of a phonetics based spelling system. There are 25 alphabets: A, AW, B, CH, D, E, F, G, NG, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, R, S, T, Ţ, U, V, Z. Mizo is an official language of the Republic of India. 8th schedule of the Indian constitution.
Nepali
Nepali
Nepali and Nepalese may refer to something of, from, or related to Nepal, such as* Nepali language, a language in the Indo-Aryan branch of the Indo-European language family* Nepali literature* Nepali Congress, a Nepalese political party...

 is also spoken in almost all parts of the state.

Religion


The majority (87%) of Mizos are Christian. in various denominations, predominantly Presbyterian and the church forms an important part of Mizo culture. Hindus form a small minority (3.6%) and there are also around 8.3% Buddhists according to the 2001 census, mostly made up from Chakma settlers of Arakan origin. Muslims make up about 1.1%.

Christianity



The major Christian denomination is the Presbyterian Church. The church Mizoram Presbyterian Church
Mizoram Presbyterian Church
Mizoram Presbyterian Church is the largest Church in Mizoram state in Northeast India. It is one of the constituent bodies of a larger denomination Presbyterian Church of India which has its headquarters in Shillong, Meghalaya in Northeast India. Mizoram Synod, as it is known, is one of the three...

 was established by a Welsh Missionary named Rev. D.E. Jones and is one of the constituted bodies of the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church of India
Presbyterian Church of India
The Presbyterian Church of India is one of the mainline Protestant Churches in India, with over one million adherents, mostly in Northeast India. It is the largest Christian denomination in that region. The PCI was founded in 1841 by missionaries from the Presbyterian Church of Wales...

, which has its headquarters at Shillong in Meghalaya (India). The administration of the Presbyterian Church is highly centralised. The Synod, with its headquarters at Aizawl, is the highest decision making body of the church with considerable influence. The financial operation, personnel (including selection of missionaries), administration, management and operation of the church are directly or indirectly controlled by the Synod Headquarters. Other Christian churches include the Baptist Church of Mizoram
Baptist Church of Mizoram
Baptist Church of Mizoram, abbreviated BCM is a Protestant denomination of India and the second biggest Church in Mizoram state in Northeast India....

, United Pentecostal Church, the Salvation Army
Salvation Army
The Salvation Army is a Protestant Christian church known for its thrift stores and charity work. It is an international movement that currently works in over a hundred countries....

, the Seventh-day Adventist Church
Seventh-day Adventist Church
The Seventh-day Adventist Church is a Protestant Christian denomination distinguished by its observance of Saturday, the original seventh day of the Judeo-Christian week, as the Sabbath, and by its emphasis on the imminent second coming of Jesus Christ...

, Kohhran Thianghlim, Roman Catholic, Lairam Jesus Christ Baptist Church(LIKBK)
Lairam Jesus Christ Baptist Church(LIKBK)
The work of the Baptist Missionary Society of England in the 20th Century was the beginning of Christianity in the Lairam , India. BMS missionaries such as Rev. J.H Lorrain & Rev. F.W Savidge were the pioneers who evangelized the Lai and developed them into ecclesiastical formation...

, and the Evangelical Church of Maraland
Evangelical Church of Maraland
Evangelical Church of Maraland is a Church in southern Mizoram in Northeast India. It was founded by English missionary Rev. & Mrs Reginald Arthur Lorrain in 1907. It is the largest Church among Mara people. It is one of the three Mizoram Churches pioneered by English Missionaries in the 19th century...

, Independent Church of India (ICI) and Evangelical Free Church of India (EFCI. There also exist a church in the capital, located in mission veng,named ENGLISH CONGREGATION CHURCH which is conducted in ENGLISH and where people belonging to different parts of India as well as the world come to praise the lord. It was established in 1978 and is still considered as one of the reputed churches of mizoram. There are also a few number of Mizos who practice Judaism.

Buddhism


According to 2001 census report there are more than 70,494 people follow Buddhism in Mizoram. The Chakmas and Tongchangya or Tanchangya
Tanchangya
Tanchangya may refer to:*the Tanchangya people*the Tanchangya language...

 are Buddhist since long times ago. Approximately there are a hundred of monasteries known as vihara in Pali
Páli
- External links :* *...

. Buddhism
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

 is a religion in a way to improve one's spiritual development. There are many school of Buddhism in ancient time but at present there are three majors school of Buddhism those are Mahayana
Mahayana
Mahāyāna is one of the two main existing branches of Buddhism and a term for classification of Buddhist philosophies and practice...

 Theravada
Theravada
Theravada ; literally, "the Teaching of the Elders" or "the Ancient Teaching", is the oldest surviving Buddhist school. It was founded in India...

 and Vajrayana
Vajrayana
Vajrayāna Buddhism is also known as Tantric Buddhism, Tantrayāna, Mantrayāna, Secret Mantra, Esoteric Buddhism and the Diamond Vehicle...

. Among the three schools only Theravada
Theravada
Theravada ; literally, "the Teaching of the Elders" or "the Ancient Teaching", is the oldest surviving Buddhist school. It was founded in India...

 Buddhism
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

 exists in Mizoram.

Tribal Status


All indigenous Mizos are scheduled as tribal. Chakma
Chakma
Chakma may refer to:*Chakma people, a Tibeto-Burman people of Bangladesh and Northeast India*Chakma language, the Indo-European language spoken by them*Chakma script...

'Tongchangya or Tanchangya
Tanchangya
Tanchangya may refer to:*the Tanchangya people*the Tanchangya language...

 and Tuikuk (Riang/Brus) form a minority.

Education


Until 1894, when the missionaries introduced elementary education, Mizos were illiterate without any written language.
The first primary school was set up in 1898 at Aizawl. In 1901 it was thought that literacy was only 0.9% but by 2005 census had reached 89%. Today Mizoram is second only to Kerala
Kerala
or Keralam is an Indian state located on the Malabar coast of south-west India. It was created on 1 November 1956 by the States Reorganisation Act by combining various Malayalam speaking regions....

 for literacy in India at 95%. There are several educational establishments under the umbrella of the Ministry of Education, including universities, colleges and other institutions. Within Mizoram University
Mizoram University
Mizoram University was established on July 2, 2001, by the Mizoram University Act, 2000 of the Parliament of India as a Central University the President of India as its Visitor...

, there are 29 undergraduate colleges including 2 professional institutions affiliated with the university. The total enrolment in these institutions is approximately 5200 students. The National Institute of Technology for Mizoram is currently operating under NIT Nagpur and is expected to function in Mizoram soon. Indian Institute of Mass Communication has also plans to start a campus. ICFAI Mizoram University also offers Business studies in Aizawl. Plans are underway to start a Medical College by the Mizoram Government.

The College of Veterinary Sciences & Animal Husbandry, Selesih, Aizawl, Mizoram is the premier institute of Veterinary Medicine
Veterinary medicine
Veterinary Medicine is the branch of science that deals with the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of disease, disorder and injury in non-human animals...

 catering the needs of north-eastern states of India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

.

Politics


Originally land tenure was invested with the head of the tribe or chief assisted by a council that ruled locally. After annexation by the British in the 1890s, Mizoram was administered as the Lushai Hills district of Assam. The colonial power introduced inner line regulation, restricting access to any outsiders. It was renamed as the district of Mizo Hills within Assam State in 1954 and in the same year the Young Mizo association was formed which is still an important institution in Mizoram. In order to protect ethno cultural identity, and with various political differences, friction developed with mainland India and insurgency started with an armed revolt in 1966
March 1966 Mizo National Front uprising
The March 1966 Mizo National Front uprising was a revolt against the Government of India, aimed at establishing a sovereign state for the Mizos. On 1 March 1966, the Mizo National Front made a declaration of independence, after launching coordinated attacks on the Government offices and security...

. The region was subsequently declared Mizoram after the insurgency, receiving status as a Union territory in 1972. It became a State of India in 1986, formalised the following year.

Administration



After the 1986 signing of the Historic Memorandum of Settlement between the Government of India and the Mizo National Front, Mizoram was granted Statehood on 20 February 1987 (as per the Statehood Act of 1986). Mizoram became the 23rd State of the Indian Union.
As in other Indian states, the ceremonial head of the state government is a governor appointed by the Union Government
Government of India
The Government of India, officially known as the Union Government, and also known as the Central Government, was established by the Constitution of India, and is the governing authority of the union of 28 states and seven union territories, collectively called the Republic of India...

. The appointment is largely ceremonial. The Chief Minister, who holds executive power in the state, is the elected head. The governor appoints the cabinet ministers on the advice of the Chief Minister. Mizoram has a unicameral legislature like most other Indian states. The Lais, Maras and Chakmas have separate autonomous District Councils. The present Chief Minister of Mizoram is Pu Lalthanhawla
Pu Lalthanhawla
Lal Thanhawla has been the Chief Minister of Mizoram since December 11, 2008. He successfully contested the 2008 Mizoram Assembly Election in Serchhip and South Tuipui. His party, the Indian National Congress, resoundingly won that election with 32 MLAs.-Background and education:He is the son of...

  • Assembly election results of Mizoram
    Assembly election results of Mizoram
    Legislative Assembly election results of Mizoram, India.-1972:Party No. of candidates No. of elected No. of votes %Indian National Congress 29 6 3442130,91%Samyukta Socialist Party 18 0 1713 1,54%...


The Mizoram State Legislative Assembly has 40 seats and the Village Councils are the grassroots
Grassroots
A grassroots movement is one driven by the politics of a community. The term implies that the creation of the movement and the group supporting it are natural and spontaneous, highlighting the differences between this and a movement that is orchestrated by traditional power structures...

 of democracy and leadership in Mizoram.

There are three Autonomous District Councils (ADC) for ethnic tribes in Mizoram, namely Chakma Autonomous District Council
Chakma Autonomous District Council
The Chakma Autonomous District Council was formed under the Sixth schedule of the Constitution of India on April 29, 1972. The Council is the replication of the state assembly and exercises executive power over specially allotted departments. The people of CADC are also enjoying special safeguard...

 (CADC) for ethnic Chakma
Chakma people
The Chakmas , also known as the Changhma , are a community that inhabits the Chittagong Hill Tracts of Bangladesh and the North-East India. The Chakmas are the largest ethnic group in the Chittagong Hill Tracts, making up more than half the tribal population. Chakmas are divided into 46 clans or...

s in South-western Mizoram bordering Bangladesh
Bangladesh
Bangladesh , officially the People's Republic of Bangladesh is a sovereign state located in South Asia. It is bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma to the far southeast and by the Bay of Bengal to the south...

, Mara Autonomous District Council
Mara Autonomous District Council
Mara Autonomous District Council is one of the three Autonomous District Councils within Mizoram state of Union India. Primarily, an autonomous administrative government meant for the Mara people living in the state. It is situated in the southern tip of Mizoram state bordering Myanmar...

 (MADC) for Mara people
Mara people
The Mara people are a recognised scheduled tribe in India, native to northeastern India, primarily in the Mara Autonomous District Council of the state of Mizoram, where they form the majority of the population. Significant numbers of Maras are also found living south-eastern part of Burma, in Chin...

 in the Southern-most corner and Lai Autonomous District Council
Lai Autonomous District Council
Lai Autonomous District Council is one of the three Autonomous District Councils in Mizoram state in North-east India. It is an Autonomous District Council for ethnic Lai people earlier known as Pawi, living in South-eastern Mizoram bordering Myanmar and Bangladesh. The L.A.D.C. has its...

 (LADC) for Lai people in South-eastern part of the state.

Economy


Mizoram lags behind economically within India with little development due to the geographical lack of markets and raw materials. Cottage industry and other small-scale industries play an important role in the economy. Forest products are being encouraged (see bamboo below) and the 9th Five Year Plan
Five-Year Plans of India
The economy of India is based in part on planning through its five-year plans, which are developed, executed and monitored by the Planning Commission. The tenth plan completed its term in March 2007 and the eleventh plan is currently underway...

 (1997–2002) gives priority to "agro-based industries." Around 70% of the population is engaged in agriculture.

The Industry Department actively promotes the following:
  • Zoram Industrial Development Corporation. (ZIDCO)
  • Mizoram Khadi and Village Industry Board. (MKVIB)
  • Zoram Handloom and Handicraft Corporation Limited. (ZOHANCO)
  • Mizoram Food and Allied Industries Corporation Limited. (MIFCO)
  • Zoram Electronics Development Corporation. (ZENICS)

Macro-economic trend


Below is a chart of trends in gross state product
Gross state product
Gross state product is a measurement of the economic output of a state or province...

 of Mizoram at market prices estimated by Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation with figures in millions of Indian rupees.
Year Gross State Domestic Product
1980 680
1985 1,810
1990 3,410
1995 9,370
2000 17,690


Mizoram's gross domestic state product for 2004 is estimated at $685 million in current prices.

Bamboo industry


There are at least 20 identifiable species of bamboo indigenous to mizoram. Some 30% of the state is covered with wild bamboo
Bamboo
Bamboo is a group of perennial evergreens in the true grass family Poaceae, subfamily Bambusoideae, tribe Bambuseae. Giant bamboos are the largest members of the grass family....

 forests, many of which are largely unexploited. Mizoram harvests 40% of India's 80 million-ton
Ton
The ton is a unit of measure. It has a long history and has acquired a number of meanings and uses over the years. It is used principally as a unit of weight, and as a unit of volume. It can also be used as a measure of energy, for truck classification, or as a colloquial term.It is derived from...

 annual bamboo crop. The current state administration wishes to increase revenue streams from bamboo and aside from uses as a substitute for timber, there is research underway to utilise bamboo more widely such as using bamboo chippings for paper mills, bamboo charcoal
Charcoal
Charcoal is the dark grey residue consisting of carbon, and any remaining ash, obtained by removing water and other volatile constituents from animal and vegetation substances. Charcoal is usually produced by slow pyrolysis, the heating of wood or other substances in the absence of oxygen...

 for fuel, fertiliser and the manufacture of pressed wall panels.

Bamboo flowering, rats and famine


Mizoram has always suffered from famine known locally as 'mautam
Mautam
Mautam is a cyclic ecological phenomenon that occurs every 48 years in the northeastern Indian states of Mizoram and Manipur, which are thirty percent covered by wild bamboo forests, as well as Chin State in Burma, particularly Hakha, Thantlang, Falam, Paletwa and Matupi Townships, creating a...

' or 'thingtam' every few decades. The problem is caused by the synchronous flowering of bamboo species which naturally flower and then die at regular intervals. When bamboo has flowered it produces many seeds and fruit causing rodent feeding frenzies. The mautam always leads to dramatic increases in local rat populations as well as producing swarms of insects, which then spread to the human food storage areas after the natural harvest is expired – destroying stocks and food crops. Historically it led to death by starvation (102 in 1859) and even today presents much hardship to many rural communities whose very survival depends on a successful harvest.

The famines are called after the name of the bamboo that flowers. Meloccana baccifera is called "Mautak" in mizo and the famine that is caused by its flowering is named "Mautam". When Bambusa Tulda flowers, called "Rawthing" in mizo, the consequent famine is known as "Thingtam". The first Thingtam famine in 1739 was followed by a Mautam in 1769. A Mautam famine occurs 30 years after a Thingtam famine and the latter occurs 18 years after a Mautam. This gives a cycle of around 48 years. There was a Mautam famine in 2006– 2007 and so a Thingtam is expected in 2025. The next more severe Mautam famine is expected in 2055.

It was in October 2005 that the initial heavy flowering of the bamboo was first noticed at Chawngtlai bamboo forest in the southern district of Champhai. It then spread rapidly in 2006 – 2007 throughout the state. After the Mautam, desperate to control the rising rat population, the state government announced a reward of one rupee for every rat-tail taken. During 2006 alone more than 221,636 rats were killed.

The famines have played their part in Mizoram's history. The famine in 1958 led to the formation of the Mizo National Famine Front which lobbied for and set up relief to villagers by mobilising the youth to distribute rice and provisions. The MNFF later changed its name to the MNF and operated as a political unit to fight for the rights of Mizo people. Under the then Chief Minister Laldenga together with his supporters including the ex Chief Minister Zoramthanga, the group fought a bitter separatist struggle for twenty years against the Indian Army
Indian Army
The Indian Army is the land based branch and the largest component of the Indian Armed Forces. With about 1,100,000 soldiers in active service and about 1,150,000 reserve troops, the Indian Army is the world's largest standing volunteer army...

 for self rule.

Agriculture


The agro-climatic conditions of Mizoram having both temperate and semi tropical climates with tropic and temperate
Temperate
In geography, temperate or tepid latitudes of the globe lie between the tropics and the polar circles. The changes in these regions between summer and winter are generally relatively moderate, rather than extreme hot or cold...

 zones,is conducive to a wide variety of crops. Mizoram has well-distributed rainfall of 1900 mm to 3000 mm (75 to 118 inches) spread over eight to ten months in the year and agriculture is the mainstay of the Mizos. More than 70% of the total population is engaged in some form of agriculture. The age-old practice of Jhum
Shifting cultivation
Shifting cultivation is an agricultural system in which plots of land are cultivated temporarily, then abandoned. This system often involves clearing of a piece of land followed by several years of wood harvesting or farming, until the soil loses fertility...

cultivation is conducted by most people living in rural areas. Recently, Godrej Agrovet Limited has entered into a new venture wherein Oil Palm
Oil palm
The oil palms comprise two species of the Arecaceae, or palm family. They are used in commercial agriculture in the production of palm oil. The African Oil Palm Elaeis guineensis is native to West Africa, occurring between Angola and Gambia, while the American Oil Palm Elaeis oleifera is native to...

 and Jatropha
Jatropha
Jatropha is a genus of approximately 175 succulent plants, shrubs and trees , from the family Euphorbiaceae. The name is derived from the Greek words ἰατρός , meaning "physician," and τροφή , meaning "nutrition," hence the common name physic nut. Mature plants produce separate male and female...

 cultivation, for biofuels is being promoted. A low calorie sugar substitute, Stevia
Stevia
Stevia is a genus of about 240 species of herbs and shrubs in the sunflower family , native to subtropical and tropical regions from western North America to South America. The species Stevia rebaudiana, commonly known as sweetleaf, sweet leaf, sugarleaf, or simply stevia, is widely grown for its...

rebaudiana, known as 'sweetleaf', has also recently been grown to improve economical agricultural diversity.

Food processing


Attempts to add value in food processing are ongoing and MIFCO have canned local bamboo shoots and also the tasty edible spadix of Alocasia fornicata
Alocasia fornicata
Alocasia fornicata is a plant species of many-nerved, broad-leaved, rhizomatous or tuberous perennials from the family Araceae, found in Asia...

, known as Baibing . The total production of fruits, vegetables, and spices increase yearly but attempts to wean local farmers away from shifting cultivation known locally as Jhum cultivation have been met with mixed success.

Handicrafts


Mizo women use hand loom to make clothing and cloth handicrafts.The local products are even fused with other materials to give them a fashionable and stylish designs. Mizos are fond of colourful hand woven wrap-around skirt called puan chei, and a matching beautiful top called Kawr chei. A multi colour Mizo traditional bag called Khiang kawi, which is creatively knitted out of bright coloured wools, is a welcome possession. A typical Mizo blanket known as Pawnpui is also used.

Basket weaving is also common. Baskets known as Em, are used and Thlangra – a plate for cleaning rice etc. are made from bamboos. In fact,a typical Mizo house is crafted out of bamboos, dry grasses, mud and wood. A traditional Mizo village has been reconstructed at Reiek – a few kilometres away from Aizawl. Though modern houses made with bricks, concrete and tin sheets are now the norm.

Tourism


Mizoram is considered by many as a beautiful place due to its dramatic landscape and pleasant climate. There have been many attempts to increase revenue through tourism but many potential tourists find the lack of amenities to be a hurdle. However the State continues to promote itself and many projects have been initiated. The tourism ministry continues to maintain or upgrade its tourist lodges throughout the state. Foreign tourists are required to obtain an 'inner line permit' under the special permit
Foreigners (Protected Areas) Order 1958 (India)
The Foreigners Order 1958 states that a Protected Area Permit is required for non-Indian citizens to visit certain areas in India . Certain requirements have to be fulfilled in order to get this permit. Indian citizens, who are not resident in these areas need a Inner Line Permit to enter these...

 before visiting. The permit can be obtained from Indian missions abroad for a limited number of days or direct from Mizoram Government authorities within India. The state is rich in bird diversity, which has the potentiality to make it a major birding destination. For Mrs Hume's Pheasant Syrmaticus humiae, Mizoram is a stronghold. There is also a rare record of the Wild Water Buffalo from the state. There are several past records of the Sumatran rhinoceros from Mizoram, then Lushai Hills.The small population of Wild elaphants can be seen in Ngengpui and Dampa Sanctuaries.

Medicine


Mizoram Hospitals are well equipped and most medicines are available off the shelf without prescription. The rural communities use local herbal medicines gathered from the wild and obtain from Mini Hospital, like Sub-Centre, Public Health Centre, etc. In line with the growing use of all herbal medicines gathered internationally, many local species are now becoming rare. Attempts to sustainably promote and harvest local medicines have met with limited success.

Energy sector


Mizoram is not self sufficient in power. Despite having a rich potential in hydropower
Hydropower
Hydropower, hydraulic power, hydrokinetic power or water power is power that is derived from the force or energy of falling water, which may be harnessed for useful purposes. Since ancient times, hydropower has been used for irrigation and the operation of various mechanical devices, such as...

, it is yet to be developed. Some communities use solar power – at least for light. There are 22 diesel
Diesel engine
A diesel engine is an internal combustion engine that uses the heat of compression to initiate ignition to burn the fuel, which is injected into the combustion chamber...

 power stations for power backup (26.14 MW)and 9 mini/micro hydel (hydroelectric) plants producing 8.25 MW. As per the 16th Electric Power Survey of India under CEA, Government of India, the restricted peak load demand of the state during the 2002–2003 year is 102 MW.

Transport infrastructure


Mizoram has a road network of around 4000 km (2,485.5 mi) or minor or village roads and a small number of national highways. The village roads are primarily single lane or unmetalled tracks that are typically lightly trafficked. The State is connected to the Indian network through National Highway 54. Another highway, NH-150 connects the state with Seling Mizoram to Imphal Manipur
Manipur
Manipur is a state in northeastern India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. Manipur is bounded by the Indian states of Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south and Assam to the west; it also borders Burma to the east. It covers an area of...

 and NH-40A links the State with Tripura
Tripura
Tripura is a state in North-East India, with an area of . It is the third smallest state of India, according to area. Tripura is surrounded by Bangladesh on the north, south, and west. The Indian states of Assam and Mizoram lie to the east. The capital is Agartala and the main languages spoken are...

.A road between Champhai
Champhai
Champhai is a border town in Mizoram state, in far eastern India. It is the headquarters of Champhai District, one of the eight districts in the state. It is located on the Indo-Myanmar border and is situated in a strategically important location. Because of this, it is the main business corridor...

 and Tiddim in Burma has been proposed but the Burmese authorities are unwilling to complete the link.

Airport


Mizoram has an airport, Lengpui Airport
Lengpui Airport
Lengpui Airport is an airport in Aizawl, Mizoram, India.The airport is connected by daily flights with Kolkata and Guwahati and three flights a week with Imphal and is located at a distance of 32 km from Aizawl, the capital of Mizoram...

, near Aizawl
Aizawl
Aizawl is the capital of the state of Mizoram in India. With a resident population 228,280 , it is the largest city within the state. It is also the center of all important government offices, state assembly house and civil secretariat...

 and this is linked from Kolkata
Kolkata
Kolkata , formerly known as Calcutta, is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. Located on the east bank of the Hooghly River, it was the commercial capital of East India...

 – a 40 minute flight. Inclement weather conditions mean that at certain times the flights are unreliable. Mizoram can also be reached from Kolkata via Silchar Airport
Silchar Airport
Silchar Airport is located in Silchar in the state of Assam, India. It was constructed by the British during the World War. The airport is situated on the foothills of the Barail range. It is the fourth busiest airport of the north-eastern India next to Guwahati, Agartala and Imphal...

, which is about 200 km. (124 miles, around 6 hours) from Aizawl. Plans of making a railroad connecting Delhi and Mizoram has been made and preparations has taken place for constructing rail stations in Sairang as of 2011.

Railway


There is a rail link at Bairabi
Bairabi
Bairabi is a census town in Kolasib district in the state of Mizoram, India. It is also the railhead of Mizoram, 130 km from the Capital, Aizawl.- Demographics :...

 rail station but it is primarily for goods traffic. The nearest practical station to Mizoram is at Silchar
Silchar
Silchar is the headquarters of Cachar district in the state of Assam in India. It is the economic gateway to the state of Mizoram and part of Manipur. It is south east of Guwahati. The city of Silchar has tremendous commercial importance and is the second largest city in the state of Assam...

  in Assam – some 6 hours drive from Aizawl. Bairabi is about 110 km (68.4 mi), and Silchar
Silchar
Silchar is the headquarters of Cachar district in the state of Assam in India. It is the economic gateway to the state of Mizoram and part of Manipur. It is south east of Guwahati. The city of Silchar has tremendous commercial importance and is the second largest city in the state of Assam...

 is about 180 km. (112 miles) from the state capital. Plans are underway to link Bairabi
Bairabi
Bairabi is a census town in Kolasib district in the state of Mizoram, India. It is also the railhead of Mizoram, 130 km from the Capital, Aizawl.- Demographics :...

 with Aizawl.

Water ways


Mizoram is in the process of developing water ways with the port of Akyab Sittwe
Sittwe
-Economy:In February 2007, India announced a plan to develop the port, which would enable ocean access from Indian Northeastern states, so called "Seven sisters", like Mizoram, via the Kaladan River....

 in Burma along Chhimtuipui River. India is investing $103 million to develop the Sittwe port on Burma's northern coast, about 160 km (99.4 mi) from Mizoram. Military government of Burma
State Peace and Development Council
The State Peace and Development Council was the official name of the military regime of Burma , which seized power in 1988. On 30 March 2011, Senior General Than Shwe signed a decree to officially dissolve the Council....

 has committed $10 million for the venture, which is part of the Kaladan Multipurpose project, though the connection is arguably of limited use.

Alcohol prohibition


In 1996 the Synod totally banned liquor under the Mizoram Liquor Total Prohibition (MLTP) Act. The church leaders or Mizoram Kohhran Hruaitute Committee continue to insists that state government keeps the state free of alcohol. Critics are of the opinion that the Liquor Ban Act, imposed in the Christian-dominated state from 1996, has totally failed and has only proliferated bootlegging of poor quality liquor, resulting in fatalities and increased prices of smuggled liquor. "If a law fails, it is either to be lifted or amended. We have experimented with the Liquor Ban Act for more than ten years, and witnessed that it has failed to stop what it is meant to stop. It only made Mizoram the wettest dry state. One can find plenty of liquor, only the prices are extraordinarily high," said former Mizoram chief secretary M. Lalmanzuala.

The retired IAS officer further blamed the wrong teaching of the European missionaries for the Church's negative attitude towards liquor which he claimed had never been a problem, but part of religious rituals before the Missionary era. The missionaries instruction, he said in his research paper, was compounded by the war-like confrontation between the well-to-dos and the poor in the pre-Christian Mizo society.

"Only the well-to-dos afforded Zu or rice beer which was brewed from surplus rice. The poor people who did not afford the Zu were the first to adopt Christianity and these people started hating the Zu which was a status symbol of the well-to-do people," he said in his research paper Mizo Culture and Liquor.

Some have argued that the complete ban on alcohol has led young people to search for other stimulants resulting in a growing drug abuse problem in the state. Although locally made alcohol is available and often in poor quality and taste, prohibition has checked the movement of liquor.

Early missionaries had directly attacked liquor and converts felt that liquor consumption ravaged the community, occupying an unwelcome position in Mizo society. Many Mizos, especially the church elders, support the idea of prohibition though there is increasing discontent.

External links