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HPC (D) wants extension of SoO

Sunday, March 13, 2011

/ Published by VIRTHLI
Aizawl: In a big set back for peace and security in Mizoram, the Hmar People’s Convention (Democratic) leadership has accused Chief Minister Lalthanhawla administration of not being committed to its words by issuing a statement, saying the outfit “is convinced of the absence of confidence, trust and commitment despite signing the document for the Suspension of Operation (SoO)” last year.

“After much deliberations on the ongoing peace process, the Hmar People’s Convention (Democratic) – HPC(D) is convinced of the absence of confidence, trust and commitment despite signing the document for the Suspension of Operation (SoO). The narrow pre-conditions that has been repeatedly put forward by the Government of Mizoram has not only reduced the credibility of the Suspension of Operation (SoO) document, but also the parties that are involved in it,” Pu L.B Hmar, secretary, department of public affairs said in a statement made available to
The HPC(D) is an offshoot of the Pu Hmingchunghnung-led Hmar Peoples’ Convention that signed a peace accord with the state government leading to the formation of Sinlung Hills Development Council in 1994.
Possibly irked with the state government’s refusal to talk to its delegates who are “outsiders”, the HPC-D make it clear that it was not satisfied with the state’s half-hearted attempt towards finding a lasting solution to the Hmar political solution. The outfit said it will was not ready for talks until a “healthy climate” is created by the government.
However, the Hmar-Government of Mizoram peace process has not been completely shelved as the HPC(D) said it will send its delegates again for extending the SoO sometime in May. “We have asked the Government of Mizoram to find a suitable date for the purpose,” Pu Hmar said.

The SoO was signed on November 11, 2010, and at that time the Government of Mizoram agreed that, “the HPC(D) shall have the liberty to appoint any respectable person(s) to assist them in their dialogue with the Government”. However, recently, a communique was received by the outfit that its delegates from outside the State were not welcomed.
“In the interest of securing a healthy climate for the political talk, the HPC(D) opines that the current term of the SoO be fruitfully employed by both sides. Accordingly, it is the stand of the HPC(D) that the ‘Hmar-Government of Mizoram Political Talk’ be held only after the extension of the current term of the SoO,” the rebels’ statement added.
The duration of the SoO is six months and if talks are ever to be held, the two sides will have to extend it by May.
In a State where identity, culture, tradition, language and memories are dying fast the table for political dialogue has already raised high expectations for the Hmar people, one of the biggest Mizo tribe.
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