A rights group in Mizoram, the Rights and Risks Analysis Group (RRAG) has raised objection to the construction of two high schools, one higher secondary school, one primary school and a mini football stadium in Aizawl East, the constituency of Chief Minister Zoramthanga.
The RRAG has written to Minister of Minority Affairs, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi to reject funding of these projects.
The rights group has claimed that the projects do not fall under minority-dominated areas, “in context of Mizoram”.
“In the context of Mizoram, the Christians have been identified as the majority and the Buddhists and other non-Christian religious groups have been identified as minorities,” the RRAG stated in its letter.
“Based on these principles, the ‘Guidelines for implementation of Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK)’ developed by the Ministry of Minority Affairs, it identified certain towns/blocks of only two districts of Mizoram i.e. Mamit (West Phaileng and Zawlnuam) and Lawngtlai (West Bunghmun, Lungsen, Chawngte, Lawngtlai and Bungtlang South) with substantial minority population for implementation of the PMJVK,” the RRAG added.
“Therefore, as per the guidelines of the PMJVK, these projects in Aizawl East-I constituency as sought by CM Zoramthanga since 2018 are not eligible for not being identified as areas with substantial minority populations by the Ministry of Minority Affairs itself,” stated Suhas Chakma, Director of the RRAG.
The RRAG further urged Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi “to advise the Government of Mizoram to hold consultations with the Government of the Chakma Autonomous District Council (CADC) in Mizoram and re-submit these projects for implementation at Chawngte, Headquarters of the CADC under Lawngtlai district which has substantial minority Buddhist populations”.
Notably, on January 12, Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga had submitted a proposal to the Union Minority Affairs Minister, requesting grant of funds construction of these projects that worth Rs 35 crore, under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK).