Speaking at the Mizo Students’ Union general conference in Thenzawl town on Thursday (September 7), the former rebel leader turned politician proudly stated that Mizoram offers a safe and peaceful refuge to those who have fled their homes in Myanmar, Bangladesh, and Manipur due to political disturbances.
He recalled his own experiences during his underground days when he, along with several leaders of the then-outlawed Mizo National Front, sought refuge in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).
“I have experienced the relief of having a sound sleep even for one night in then East Pakistan after fleeing political disturbances in Mizoram. I can sense the joy of our brethren from Myanmar, Bangladesh, and Manipur as they find solace in Mizoram, where they can sleep soundly and carry on with their daily lives without fear,” said the Mizo National Front president.
Zoramthanga emphasised that the people of Mizoram should always cherish the value of peace, highlighting that Mizoram is one of the most peaceful states in the world—a result achieved after enduring relentless disturbances.
“Our insurgency-riddled neighbours often turned to Mizoram in search of lasting peace, seeking Aizawl’s assistance in mediating peace between their governments and insurgent groups,” Zoramthanga said.
Zoramthanga praised the efforts of the state government, the people, and various organisations in Mizoram in support of their ethnic brothers and sisters. He stated, “To defend the rights of the Zo kindreds, we cannot afford to be soft-spoken, and we will never be.”
Acknowledging the role of the Mizo Students’ Union in supporting their ethnic brethren in neighbooring states and countries. He added “We shall never forget the courageous efforts of Mizo student organisations during the tumultuous Mizoram insurgency period. Let us follow in the footsteps of those pioneers who fearlessly defended our rights. It is time to recommit ourselves to this land and its people.”
During the event, an organisation called the Ladies Organization honoured Zoramthanga by presenting him with a citation for providing refuge to Myanmar refugees.
Tourism Minister Robert Romawia Royte, who also spoke at the programme, emphasised the importance of the Mizo Accord, signed between the Mizo National Front and the Indian Government in 1986, in safeguarding the interests of Mizos. He noted that Article 371G, an outcome of the peace accord, ensures their cultural and religious safeguards and attributed it to the foresight of past leaders.