Union minister on a private visit to Mizo warrior's village

Aizawl, Aug 19: Union Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain today paid a private visit to Ailawng, the village of Mizo warrior Khuangchera, and laid wreath on his plaque, student leaders said.

Gohain was accompanied by leaders of the Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) or Mizo Students Association, Mizo Students Union (MSU) and the BJP Mizoram unit.

Minister visit Mizo warrior's village

The union minister had yesterday cancelled his programme to felicitate the 19th century Mizo warrior as an Indian freedom fighter after meeting student leaders who were opposed to the move.

A joint press statement issued by Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) or Mizo Students Federation and Mizo Students Union (MSU) had said the leaders of student bodies deliberated the issue with Gohain at the Lengpui airport and the minister agreed to cancel his programme.

Gohain was quoted as saying that he understood the sentiments of the Mizo people and did not want to hurt them. Instead he decided to go to the village on a private visit.

The MZP and the MSU with Aizawl City College Students Unions had staged a demonstration yesterday and thousands of students had blocked the two roads leading to Ailawng village against Gohain's proposed programme.

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They had dispersed after learning that the programme stood cancelled. The students opposed the Centre's intention to felicitate Khuangchera as an Indian freedom fighter, saying the Mizos at that time were not a part of India and did not even know about the existence of India or British India.

Khuangchera and his friend Ngurbawnga were killed in 1890 when they tried to expel British invaders from Lushai country to save the Mizo people from the British colonial army, they said. "We had appealed to the Indian government to respect our history and not try to change the Mizo history," the student leaders had said.


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