‘Uniform Civil Code will hamper safety of Mizos’ — MP from BJP’s Northeast ally writes to law panel


The letter comes days after Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga had said though the MNF is a member of the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance, his party is in support of the policies and programmes of the NDA government, “as long as those are found to be beneficial for the public at large, and particularly for the ethnic minorities in the country.”

Vanlalvena is a senior leader of the Mizo National Front.

“…since time immemorial, we the Mizos have been living separately under our own administration for many centuries before the British administration in India and have had separate history,” he wrote to Khetrabasi Biswal, member secretary to the 22nd Law Commission of India.

“After 57 years under the British administration, we (the Mizos) were never part of India and even at the time of the Indian national movement, we were never part of British India.”

“However, in 1947, when the British left India, they left us abruptly, without properly settling matters about us, and our homeland simply became included in the new Independent India without making any specific provisions or mention of Mizoram in the newly formed Indian Constitution,” Vanlalvena continued.

The Rajya Sabha MP leader highlighted how the MNF fought for independence from the “new born country for 20 years”, before signing of the peace accord between the Government of India and the MNF on June 30, 1986.

In accordance, “Article 371G was created, which has been included in the Indian Constitution that contains special provisions to safeguard the “ownership of land, social practices, religious practices, customary laws, culture and traditions of the Mizo people,” he wrote.

Like many other states in the Northeast, Mizoram has a significant tribal population with the 2011 Census putting it at 94.4 percent. Christianity is the major religion in this state.

Incidentally, Union Home Minister Amit Shah is said to have told a Nagaland delegation in New Delhi on 5 July that the Centre is actively considering exempting Christians and certain tribal areas from the proposed Uniform Civil Code.

In his letter, Vanlalvena cautioned that the UCC’s introduction and enactment “will hamper the safety of the Mizo people by removing the special provision of Article 371(G) from the Indian Constitution,” adding that the Article “instigates the minds of the Mizo people to accept Mizoram as an integral part of India”.

The MP further mentioned that the Mizoram assembly on February 14 had passed an official resolution “to oppose any steps taken or proposed to be taken for enactment of UCC in India”.

Earlier on 4 July, Mizoram CM Zoramthanga had written to the Law Commission, convinced that the “UCC is not in the interest of ethnic minorities of India in general, and of the Mizos, in particular.”

Zoramthanga had stated that the reason for the Mizoram assembly to move, discuss and unanimously adopt the resolution was for the reason that “UCC, if enacted, would disintegrate the country as it was an attempt to terminate the religious or social practices, customary laws, culture and traditions of the religious minorities, including the Mizos”.


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