History of Mizoram
Mizoram is one of the states of Northeast India, with Aizawl as its capital. The name is derived from Mi (people), Zo (Belonging to the people of Mizoram/Lushai Hills) and Ram (land), and thus Mizoram implies "land of the hill people". In the northeast, it is the southern most landlocked state sharing borders with three of the seven sister states, namely Tripura, Assam, Manipur. The state also shares a 722 kilometer border with the neighbouring countries of Bangladesh and Myanmar.Like several other northeastern states of India, Mizoram was previously part of Assam until 1972, when it was carved out as a Union Territory. It became the 23rd state of India, a step above Union Territory, on 20 February 1987.
About Mizoram: Perched on the southernmost tip of the north eastern region, Mizoram occupies and area of great strategic importance. It is flanked by Bangladesh on the west and Myanmar on the east of south sharing a total of 722 km international boundary with the two countries. It also shares its borders with three states – Assam, Tripura and Manipur. Mizoram became the 23rd state of Indian Union in February 1987. For over two decades, it has experienced peace and steady progress. Mizoram Peace Accord signed in 1986 has the distinction of being the most enduring and successful Peace Accord in the history of Independent India.
Mizoram is a mountainous region which became the 23rd State of the Indian Union in February, 1987. It was one of the districts of Assam till 1972 when it became a Union Territory. Sandwiched between Myanmar in the east and south and Bangladesh in the west, Mizoram occupies an area of great strategic importance in the north-eastern corner of India. It has a total of 722 Km. boundary with Myanmar and Bangladesh.
Mizoram has the most variegated hilly terrain in the eastern part of India. The hills are steep and are separated by rivers which flow whether to the north or south creating deep gorges between the hill ranges. The average height of the hills is about 1000 metres. The highest peak in Mizoram is the Blue Mountain (Phawngpui) with a height of 2210 metres.
Mizoram has a pleasant climate. It is generally cool in summer and not very cold in winter. During winter, the temperature varies from 110C to 210C and in the summer it varies between 200C and 290C. The entire area is under the direct influence of the monsoon. It rains heavily from May to September and the average rainfall is 254 cm. per annum. The average rainfall in Aizawl is 208 cm. and Lunglei has 350 cm. Winter in Mizoram is rain-free and is very pleasant; the skies are wonderfully blue, and in the morning the mist formed between the hills gives an enchanting view of wide stretches of a vast lake of cloud. Mizoram has great natural beauty and an endless variety of landscape and is also very rich in flora and fauna. Almost all kinds of tropical trees and plants thrive in Mizoram. The hills are marvellously green.
Historians believe that the Mizos are a part of the great wave of the Mongolian race spilling over into the eastern and southern India centuries ago. Their sojourn in western Myanmar, into which they eventually drifted around the seventh century, is estimated to last about ten centuries. They came under the influence of the British Missionaries in the 19th century, and now most of the Mizos are Christians. One of the beneficial results of Missionary activities was the spread of education. The Missionaries introduced the Roman script for the Mizo language and formal education. The cumulative result is the present high percentage of literacy of 88.49% which is considered to be the second highest in India.
The Mizos are a distinct community and the social unit was the village. Around it revolved the life of a Mizo. Mizo village was usually set on top of a hill with the chief's house at the centre and the bachelors' dormitory called Zawlbuk prominently located in a central place. In a way the focal point in the village was the Zawlbuk where all young bachelors of the village slept. Zawlbuk was the training ground, and indeed, the cradle wherein the Mizo youth was shaped into a responsible adult member of the society.
The Social Life:
The social fabric in the Mizo society has undergone tremendous change over the years. Before the British moved into the hills, for all practical purposes, the village and the clan formed units of Mizo society.
The Mizo code of ethics or Dharma moved round "Tlawmngaihna", an untranslatable term meaning on the part of everyone to be hospitable, kind, unselfish and helpful to others. Tlawmngaihna" to a Mizo stands for that compelling moral force which finds expression in self-sacrifice for the services of others. The old belief, Pathian is still in use to term God till today. The Mizos have been enchanted to their new-found faith of Christianity with so much dedication and submissioin that their entire social life and thought process have been altogether transformed and guided by the Christian Church organisations directly or indirectly and their sense of values has also undergone drastic change.
Mizos are a close-knit society with no class distinction and no discrimination on grounds of sex. Ninety percent of them are cultivators and the village exists like a big family. Birth of a child, marriage in the village and death of a person in the village or a community feast arranged by a member of the village are important occasions in which the whole village is involved.
Nearly all the Mizo festivals revolve round the tilling of the land. Mim Kut, Chapchar Kut and Pawl Kut are the three major festivals in Mizoram all of which are in some way or the other connected with agricultural activities.
Mim Kut is celebrated in August-September in the wake of the harvesting of the maize crop. Dedicated to the memory of their dead relatives, the festival is underlined by a spirit of thanksgiving and remembrance of the years. First harvest is placed as an offering on a raised platform built to the memory of the dead.
Chapchar Kut, which is celebrated during spring time after the jhum cutting is over, is perhaps, the most joyous of the Mizo festivals. The season is ideal. The winter bows out yielding place to the spring which reinvigorates nature and brings a freshness to human life. The Mizos, irrespective of age and gender distinction, participate in the festival. Decked in colourful dresses, boys and girls go on a dancing spree which sometimes last all through the night.
Pawl kut, a post-harvesting festival, is celebrated during December-January. Again, a mood of thanksgiving is evident, because the difficult task of tilling and harvesting is over. Community feasts are organised and dances are performed. Mothers with their children sit on memorial platform and feed one another. This custom, which is also performed during Chapchar Kut, is known as Chhawnghnawt. Drinking of rice-beer is also part of the festival. These two days of festivities are followed by a day of complete rest when no one goes out to work.
As a sequel to the signing of the Historic Memorundum of Settlement between the Government of India and the Mizo National Front in 1986, Mizoram was granted Statehood on February 20, 1987 as per Statehood Act of 1986 and Mizoram became the 23rd State of the Indian Union.
The Capital of Mizoram is Aizawl. The Mizoram State Legislative Assembly has 40 seats. Mizoram is now represented at the Parliament by two members, one in the Lok Sabha and the other in the Rajya Sabha.
Mizoram has witnessed vast constitutional, political and administrative changes during the past years. The traditional cheiftainship was abolished and the District and Regional Councils created under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution of India, give a substantial measure of local control. Today, the Lais, Maras and Chakmas have seperate autonomous District Councils. The Village Councils are the grassroots of democracy in Mizoram.
Mizoram is divided into 8 Districts:-
Physiography:Hills: Mizoram is a land of rolling hills, rivers and lakes. As many as 21 major hills ranges or peaks of different heights run through the length and breadth of the state, leaving of course, some plains scattered occasionally here and there.
The average height of the hill to the west of the state is about 1,000 metres which gently rises to 1,300 metres to the east. Some areas, however, have higher ranges which go up to a height of over 2,000 metres. The Blue Mountain, situated in the south-eastern part of the state is the highest peak in Mizoram.
Rivers: Although many rivers and streamlets drain the hill ranges the most important and useful rivers are the Tlawng (also known as Dhaleswari or Katakhal), Tut (Gutur), Tuirial (Sonai) and Tuivawl which flow through the northern territory and eventually join river Barak in Cachar.
The Koldoyne (Chhimtuipui) which originates in Myanmar, is an important river in the south Mizoram. It has four tributaries and the river is in patches. The Western part is drained by Karnaphuli (Khawthlang tuipui) and its tributaries. A number of important towns including Chittagong in Bangladesh is situated at the mouth of the river. Before Independence, access to other parts of the country was possible only through the river routes via Cachar in the north, and via Chittagong in the South. Entry through the later was sealed when the Sub-continents was partitioned and ceded to E.Pakistan (now Bangladesh) in 1947.
Lakes: Lakes are scattered all over the state. But the most important of them are Palak, Tamdil, Rungdil; and Rengdil. The Palak lake is situated in Chhimtuipui District in southern Mizoram and covers an area of 30 Ha. It is believed the lake was created as a result of an earthquake or a flood. The local people believe a village which was submerged still remains intact deep under the waters.
The Tamdil lake is a natural lake situated 110/85 kms from Aizawl. Legend has it there was once a huge mustard plant in this place. When the plant was cut off, jets of water sprayed from the plant created a pool of water, and thus the name Tamdil which means of 'Lake of Mustard Plant' was born. Today the lake is an important tourist attraction and a holiday resort.
Inner Line Permit can be obtained from Liaison Officers posted in New Delhi, Kolkata, Guwahati, Shillong and Silchar. Two passports size photographs are required to be attached on the prescribed forms.
For a group of 4 or more persons, Restricted Area Permit (RAP) can be obtained from the Government of Mizoram through Liaison Officers posted at New Delhi, Kolkata & Guwahati. For less than 4 persons RAP has to obtained from the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India.
How To Get There:
Lengpui airport near the capital city, Aizawl is connected by Alliance Airline's tri-weekly flight services from Kolkata, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Indian Airlines operates daily flight service from Kolkata to Silchar (except on Sunday). The Bus/Taxi journey from Silchar to Aizawl along National Highway 54 takes usually 5 - 6 hours. From Guwahati:
Day and night service of Private and Government buses are available from Guwahati to Aizawl via Shillong. For further information, please contact Mizoram House at Shillong, Silchar, Guwahati, Kolkata and New Delhi.
Road distances from Aizawl:
Guwahati - 506 km
Imphal - 374 km
Kohima - 479 km
Shillong - 450 km
Agartala - 443 km
Aizawl - The State Capital:
Aizawl, the state capital of Mizoram came into being as a fortified post on the recommendation of Mr. Dally of the Assam Military Battalion in the spring of 1890. It is now 112 years old and is at an altitude of 4000 ft. above sea level. It has a population of approximately 2 lakhs. The city stands on a high ridge surrounded on the east by the deep green valley of the river Tuirial and on the west by the river Tlawng with its lush emerald valleys. On the north, Aizawl is protected by beautiful high craggy hills of Durtlang and the capital city stands like a huge citadel. It is adorned by picturesque scenery and peaceful surroundings with mild and enjoyable weather throughout the year. Aizawl is an ideal hill station for tourists looking for solitude, clean and fresh environment and new destinations.
Aizawl is the political and cultural centre of Mizoram. It is here that the State Legislature is situated. It is also the seat of the Government and all important Government as well as Public Sector offices are located at Aizawl. It is also the commercial hub of the State and all commercial and economic activities are centred around the city.
|Population :||260, 000|
|Weather:||Summer : Max : 30 o C Min: 20oCWinter: Max : 21o C Min 11o C|
|Altitude:||1132 metres/ 3715 Ft|
|Best time to visit:||October - March|
|Wear:||Cottons during summer and woolen during winter|
|Health issues:||Mineral water should be consumed and food should be eaten from licenses outlet|
|Language (s)Official :||English, Mizo|
How to go there:
Nearest airport is Aizawl. Aizawl is connected to Kolkata, ( 1 hr 45 min ) and Imphal ( 30 min ). Indian Airlines ( Alliance Air ) flights Kolkata - Aizawl - Kolkata ( daily service ) and Kolkata - Aizawl - Imphal - Aizawl - Kolkata ( monday, wednesday, friday ), Guwahati - Aizawl (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday) . Enquiries Telephone 2573355
Reservation Telephone 2341265, 2344733
Nearest railhead is Silchar which is in Assam ( 184 km away) From Guwahati, travel to Silchar by Barak Valley Express, Cachar Express or the Tripura Passenger. The journey takes about 19 hrs.
NH - 54 connects Aizawl with the rest of the country through Silchar. Buses and taxis are available from Silchar to Aizawl ( 6-8 hrs ). Night services are also available. Aizawl is also accessible by road from Shillong and Guwahati.
Local Transport: Taxis are the chief mode of transport in the city and rates negotiable. Buses ply on route within the state.
Places of interest:
Bara Bazar: This is the main shopping center with stalls selling garments and other commodities. The main bazaar is where the people are best seen in their traditional costumes selling produce from farms and homesteads including river crabs with little wicker baskets.
Luangmual Handicarfts Centre: 7 Kms away takes half an hour to reach by car. The 'Khumbeu' ceremonial bamboo hat is made here using waterproof 'hnahthial' leaves Mizoram State Museum: This museum is situated at Mc Donald Hill in the town center. Open Monday - Friday from 9:00 A.M to 5 PM. Saturday 9 AM to 1 PM. Though small, it has an interesting collection of historical relics, ancient costumes and traditional implements.
Durtlang Hills: These beautiful, craggy hills offer a good view of Aizawl. Mini Zoo: Home to species of animals and birds found only in the hills of Mizoram Berawtlang Tourist Complex: This is a recreational center situated 7 kms away from Aizawl City center. There are facilities of Restaurant as well as Tourist Cottages
Place of attraction nearby to Aizawl:
|Nearby attraction||how to get there||Distances|
|Bung: A beautiful picnic spot situated on a hill||by car, local bus and local taxis are available||15 Kms|
|Paikhai: A quiet and enchanting picnic spot||by car, local bus and local taxis are available||16 Kms|
|Tamdil: A natural lake surrounded by cool virgin forests. Tamdil is the largest lake in Mizoram cultivated as a fish farm and with provision for boating. are available||by car, local bus and local taxis||85 kms|