India should play vital role in bringing peace in Myanmar: Zoramthanga to PM
Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga calls on PM Modi in New Delhi

Aizawl: Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga has told Prime Minister Narendra Modi that India should play a vital role in bringing back peace in trouble-torn Myanmar, an official said on Thursday.

The chief minister on Wednesday called on the prime minister in New Delhi and they discussed a wide range of issues, including the Myanmar political crisis, he said.

During the interaction, Zoramthanga told Modi that India must play a crucial role in restoring peace in Myanmar.

The prime minister, on his part, said the Centre would make efforts to bring back peace in the neighbouring country, the official said.

Over 30,000 Myanmarese have taken refuge in Mizoram since the Myanmar Army seized power by ousting the democratically elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi in February last year.

The chief minister also urged Modi to take measures for shifting the Assam Rifles base from the heart of Aizawl to a designated camp at Zokhawsang, around 15 km from the state capital.

He also requested Modi to appoint a Mizo IAS officer as the state’s chief secretary, besides providing housing assistance to former insurgents of the Mizo National Front and waiving off loans amounting to Rs 18 crore extended to several beneficiaries under the Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO).

Meanwhile, an official statement said that Mizoram State Planning Board Vice Chairman H Rammawi, during a meeting with Smita Pant, Joint Secretary of the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi on Tuesday, said that the Mizoram government won’t send back the Myanmarese refugees to their country till the Myanmar government gives an assurance of making arrangements for their security and rehabilitation.

A majority of the refugees are lodged at relief camps, while some have rented houses and some live with their relatives in Mizoram.

The refugees are being provided with food, clothing and other relief materials by the state government, NGOs, churches and village authorities.

Mizoram shares a 510-km-long border with Myanmar. The northeastern state is already home to thousands of Myanmarese, mostly from Chin state. They have migrated to Mizoram since the late 1980s fleeing the military junta in the neighbouring country.

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