Mizoram chief minister and Mizo National Front (MNF) president Zoramthanga on Monday said Mizo nationalism, the main driving force behind the martyrdom of Mizo heroes, is pivotal to the survival of Mizoram and the Mizos.

The ruling MNF observed martyrs’ day to pay tribute to those who laid down their lives for the cause of the state and the Mizos.

Speaking at the grand observance of 42nd martyrs’ day held at Vanapa Hall here, Zoramthanga said each nation has its own form of nationalism.

However, the Mizo nationalism promoted by the MNF is unique and different from others as it stands for “God and the Mizo nation,” he said.

Citing that the MNF party has been facing up and down, the MNF president said the party would not have reached its present position had it not believed in God and used Him as its refuge.

“We would not have reached this stage had we promote nationalism and function without the help of God. This is the covenant of not only the MNF but also the Mizo nation,” he said, adding that the MNF is one of the oldest parties in the country.

He claimed that the party is awaited by a divine blessing once Covid-19 subsided.

“If we carry on the covenant, we will be protected by God. We should stray but carry on this covenant and fulfil it,” he said.

MNF senior vice president and deputy chief minister Tawnluia also spoke on the occasion.

During the observation, floral tributes were paid to thousands of Mizos, who laid down their precious lives during the insurgent movement.

The MNF was founded by former Mizoram chief minister late Laldenga to protest against the inaction of the Centre towards the famine situation in the Mizo areas of the Assam state in the late 1950s.

After a major uprising through peaceful means, the group took up arms and was involved in underground activities between 1966 and 1986. After coming overground in 1986, the MNF was converted into a political party and is now a recognised regional or state party.

The MNF has won assembly polls in 1986, 1998, 2003 and 2018. Due to the incumbency wave, the party suffered a heavy defeat by winning only 3 out of 40 seats in the 2008 assembly elections.

With its strong total prohibition agenda and the incumbency wave on the ruling Congress, the MNF came back to power in 2018 assembly polls under the leadership of Zoramthanga by sweeping 26 seats and later won one more seat in the assembly bypoll.

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