Saffron party initiates move to expand presence in the hilly NE state otherwise predominantly inhabited by Christians; to be headed by Lalhriatrenga Chhangte
Aizawl: In an effort to expand its presence in Mizoram, a state in Northeast India pre-dominantly inhabited by Christians, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has set up a ‘Christian Missionary Cell’ to be headed by the newly inducted BJP member Lalhriatrenga Chhangte, party sources said on Friday.
A party leader told EastMojo that the formation of missionary cell was discussed with the party’s Northeast zonal secretary Ajay Jamwal on Wednesday and was finalised on Friday.
Chhangte will lead the cell as chairman and he will appoint committee members in consultation with state party president Prof JV Hluna, the leader said.
The leader said that the main objective of the cell is to make good relationship with all the churches and para-churches and to collect data of all missionaries in order to extend help to them when they face problems.
Chhangte, who joined the party on July 12, had said that the Centre had promised him to set up missionary cell in order to extend help to churches and missionaries. The main motive was to change the party’s image, which most Christian considered anti-Christian or party that support communal politics, he had said.
He had also said that the BJP should go in accordance with local ethos in every state.
Chhange was the first mining engineer from Mizoram and had resigned as deputy controller of mines at the Indian Bureau of Mining, Kolkata before the Lok Sabha polls. He was invited by the BJP to contest the Lok Sabha polls on the party ticket in April, but he had refused and contested as independent. “Though the BJP had invited me to contest the Lok Sabha polls on the party ticket, I refused it because I want to test the water of Mizoram politics,” he said.
He said that in Mizoram, people mostly voted on party based for which he finally decided to join the biggest political party in the world.
So far, the BJP has failed to make much inroad in Mizoram.