Wednesday, August 24, 2011

MCDF deplores CYCA president’s pro-corruption stand

Mizoram Chakma Development Forum
C3/441, Second Floor, Janakpuri, New Delhi- 110058
Contact No. 0-9958562835

23 August 2011
Press Release

MCDF deplores CYCA president’s pro-corruption stand

New Delhi: Today the Mizoram Chakma Development Forum (MCDF) deplored the pro-corruption stand taken by the President of the Central Young Chakma Association (CYCA), Mr Sashi Chakma who has opposed the decision of the Lawngtlai District Development and Vigilance Forum (LDDVF) to file a case with the CBI against alleged corruption by leaders in Chakma Autonomous District Council (CADC).

In a press statement dated 18th August 2011, the CYCA opposed the decision of Lawngtlai District Development and Vigilance Forum (LDDVF) to seek a CBI probe into the alleged “sudden accumulation of wealth” by some CADC leaders. The CYCA stated that the decision to approach the CBI was politically motivated and taken without the consultation with CYCA President Mr Sashi Chakma who claims to be the Vice Chairperson of the LDDVF, sub-headquarters, Chawngte.

“Everybody knows that corruption is all-pervading in CADC. When the entire nation is raising its voice against corruption, it is really unfortunate that CYCA president Mr Sashi Chakma has raised objections to the anti-corruption actions taken by the LDDVF. Whether the case is political or not, it is upto the concerned political party or the accused to respond, not the CYCA which is expected to be apolitical organization. The pro-corruption stand taken by the CYCA president is against the ethos of the CYCA and such a stand may diminish the morale of Chakmas fighting against corruption at various levels.” – stated Mr Hemanta Larma, president of MCDF.

“The CYCA is supposed to work for development and progress of the society including taking measures for eliminating corruption which hampers development. If Mr Sashi Chakma as sub-headquarter Vice Chairperson of LDDVF has any problem with the decisions taken at LDDVF meetings, he should have used his LDDVF position to protest. He must refrain himself from using the CYCA to settle personal differences with any other individual or organization.” – further stated Mr Larma. [Ends]

Monday, August 22, 2011

Chakmas support Anna Hazare's movement

Chakma community people have come out in strong support for the anti-corruption movement launched by Gandhian Anna Hazare. On 21 August, scores of Chakmas joined the protest at Ramlila Maidan, New Delhi, under the banner of Mizoram Chakma Development Forum (MCDF). MCDF wants inclusion of Autonomous District Councils' political leaders namely CEM, EM, MDCs and all officials/staff serving under the ADCs under the purview of the Lokpal. In this regards, MCDF will formally submit its recommendations to both the Parliamentary Standing Committee and the Anna Team, it is learnt.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Murder of Democracy

On 15 August, we celebrated our freedom. The next day, the Government murdered that freedom by arresting Anna Hazare and his supporters.

Crack down on democratic rights, I CONDEMN !!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Mizoram: Is there a silent storm?

A lot of things are happening in this tiny hilly state of Mizoram in far away North East, without being noticed by the mainstream media or policy makers.

On 5 August 2011, while addressing Congress party workers in Lunglei in southern Mizoram, Chief Minister Lalthanhawla reportedly stated that Mizos should accept that they are Indians, or face, as a consequence, cancellation of their ration cards.

This is a statement which makes little sense for two very simple reasons. First, ration card is not a document that signifies your nationality as Indian. Ration card is in fact not even accepted as a valid identity card; it is merely to ensure food security to the poor.

Second, in any way you won’t be issued a ration card in India if you’re not an Indian citizen unless you have acquired it fraudulently.     

In other words, this means that for their entitlement of a ration card (as fundamental right to life) the poor people do not need to wear a badge of being an Indian, or shout "vande mataram" in the streets to prove their loyalty towards the Indian constitution.

But the statement of the Chief Minister is bound to receive strong reactions from the Mizos considering the dormant aspiration a significant section of them have for “unification” of all “Zo” clans, one day.

“I am Mizo by birth..Indian by force”, announced a commentator at popular Mizo blog, which seems to capture a popular mood of the Mizos on the internet.

On 7 July 2011, chief of an influential regional political party in the state, Zoram Nationalist Party (ZNP), Lalduhoma in his speech in Mizoram Assembly exhorted the Mizos to shed their political differences and strive for “greater autonomy, including self determination”, albeit through a non-violent means. The Mizo Peace Accord of 1986 neither healed the wounds of Mizoram nor did it fulfill the aspirations of people, he is reported to have said. Given the political sensitivity attached to the speech, Parliamentary affairs minister Lalsawta was quick to censure Lalduhoma for his “extra-constitutional position”.

However, Chief Minister Lalthanhawla himself assured the Assembly on 25 July 2011 that Mizos won’t accept the political boundary “imposed” on them. He said this while opposing the proposed construction of a fence on India-Myanmar border. The Chief Minister allegedly stated that a large portion of western Myanmar inhabited by the Mizos is “our land”.

Mizoram-based Zo Re-unification Organisation (Zoro), an organisation that aspires for unification of all Zo tribes scattered across the Northeast region of India, Myanmar and Bangladesh, immediately hailed Lalthanhawla’s statement. “Zoro is proud to have such political leaders who firmly believe that all the land inhabited by the Mizos belongs to Mizos”, it stated.

Therefore, the Chief Minister’s ration card vis-à-vis Indian identity statement of 5 August 2011 assumes greater significance. Is he trying to convey that in Mizoram there is a sense of alienation amongst the Mizo people which must be properly channelized before it gets out of hand? The stern sounding diktat-like words of the Chief Minister reflect a storm that is undercurrent. 

The happenings around Mizoram are definitely a food for thought for leaders in Delhi ahead of 64th anniversary of India’s independence. Mizoram may be the only “island of peace” in the troubled-torn North East; but there is an urgent need for Delhi to re-assess whether Mizoram and its people have been taken care of well since the signing of Mizo Peace Accord in 1986, or the feeling of alienation is simply misplaced?

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