Mizoram govt signs pact with Hmar rebels



Aizawl: Mizoram government and the Manipur-based Hmar People's Convention - Democrats (HPC-D) on Thursday signed Suspension of Operation (SoO) pact after holding talks in Aizawl.

Official sources told PTI that the negotiations were held under cordial atmosphere and the SoO would be effective for six months and could be extended if agreed by both the parties.

According to the conditions laid down in the SoO, the HPC-D men would be allowed to move freely anywhere in the state without firearms and explosives.

The Hmar militants were not allowed to indulge in illegal and violent activities in Mizoram including extortion and intimidation and would not do anything to prevent the people from exercising free franchise.

A joint monitoring committee to monitor the implementation of the SoO was formed in which the state SP, CID (SB) was appointed as the chairman and three members from both the parties.

The next round of talks would be held after the by-election to the Chalfilh Assembly seat scheduled for February 23, the officials added.

A team of officials led by Lalbiakzama, Joint Secretary for Home represented the Mizoram government while the HPC-D delegation comprised of Lalbeiseia and Hrangneihkung, both public relations officers (PROs) of the outfit and Lalthanliana and Francis Songate, both overground consultants of the HPC-D.

The SoO was earlier signed between the Mizoram government and the HPC-D on November 11, 2010 in Aizawl, but the peace talks ran into rough weather resulting in the SoO and the peace efforts fizzling out.

In another effort to resume the peace process, the first round of talks was again held in neighbouring Assam's Silchar city in December.

PTI