After signing the memorable Peace Accord between the Government of India and the MNF on June 20th 1986, Mizoram became a State in 1987. The insurgency that broke out in Mizoram in 1966, lasted for twenty long years, checking all development activities in the region. But the signing of this important Peace Accord brought a new dawn to Mizoram, which is often called the land of enchanting hills. The signing of the Peace Accord is, indeed, a turning point in the development history of Mizoram. The era of peace and progress has now come. As the reward for peace, development initiatives have been taken on various fronts and the people of the State are the real beneficiaries of the fruits of development.
Till 1990s, Mizoram had three districts with three autonomous District Councils. But now, the State has eight districts with three autonomous District Councils. At present, Mizoram has twenty two towns with 22 rural development blocks in the State.
If one is really keen to analyse the socio-economic development scenario of the eight North Eastern States, one could easily find out that Mizoram is ahead of other North-Eastern States in many respects. According to the Eleventh Finance Commission's Index of Economic and Social Infrastructure, Mizoram ranks first among the North Eastern States getting 82% points followed by
Literacy is another area in which Mizoram has done exceedingly well. At present, Mizoram has the highest literacy rate among the North East States. According to 2001 Census, the literacy percentage of the State was 88.8%, second highest in the country, next only to Kerala. This is amazing considering that Mizoram had its first ever High School only in 1944 and its first
Women literacy in Mizoram, which is 86.13% is again highest in the whole of North East. Moreover, according to the figure provided by the Economic Survey of India 2002-03, gender differences in work participation in Mizoram, that is, gender gap is one of the lowest in
Moreover, the Educational Development Index (EDI) prepared at the National level indicates that in the year 1995 Mizoram got the first rank, which means, highest in the nation. The four broad parameters used for the EDI are investment in education, literacy achievement, universalization of elementary education and availability of educational facilities. This indeed is a significant achievement for the State of
Another remarkable progress made in Mizoram is in the field of eradication of poverty. As one knows, poverty is one of the socio-economic indicators for development. Below Poverty Level family estimates (BPL estimates) prepared by the Ministry of Food & Civil Supplies of the Union Government, indicates that in 1993-94 and in 1999-2000, Mizoram had the least number of families living below poverty line in the whole North-Eastern States. The percentage of families living below poverty level in the State of
One of the indicators of development is per capita income. According to the figure provided by the Economic Survey of India, released each year before the Union Budget is presented, Mizoram has had the highest per capita income among the seven States in the North East, for two consecutive years. In 1998-99, the per capita income of Mizoram at current prices was Rs. 13,479 and in 2002-2003, the figure was Rs. 22,207. This, no doubt, is a big achievement for Mizoram which is very much land-locked and inaccessible as compared to most of the other States in the North East.
The Human Development Index 1991 published in the Economic Survey 2002-03, put Mizoram at the 7th position in the Nation, which again is highest in the whole North-East. The positions of other states in the North East in this respect are - Manipur 9th, Nagaland 11th, Tripura 22nd, Meghalaya 24th,
In respect of rice and foodgrain production, Mizoram's productivity rate is above the North East States' average. In rice production, the North East States' average was 1,427 kg. per hectare in 1997-98 as against Mizoram's average at 1,624 kg. In the same year, the total foodgrain production average in the North East States was 1,400 kg. per hectare. In Mizoram, it was 1,600 kg. The productivity rate of Mizoram, as compared to other states in the North East in respect of rice and total foodgrain production is third, in both cases. To promote export, the Government of Mizoram submitted a project report, requesting the Central Government to declare Mizoram for Agriculture Export Zone (AEZ) for passion fruit.
One of the most tangible outcomes of peace in the State of
As we all know, road and communication happen to be one of the most important infrastructures for development of a region or a state. By the end of March 1989, the total road length in Mizoram was 4,850 km, against the total road length of 2,662 km in 1983. This means that, the total road length in Mizoram increased by 2,188 km, which means an increase of about 45 percent during a short period of six years. During the same period, the total length of surfaced road also increased from 1,168 km to 1,760 km, an increase of 592 km surfaced road length. The road per 100 sq km also increased from 12.62 km in 1983 to 22.99 km in 1989. Road density in the State in 2005 was 27.5 km per 100 sq km.
Another remarkable development, as a fulfillment of Memorandum of Settlement / Peace Accord 1986 was establishment of a High Court Bench in Mizoram. Besides, a
Another step actively taken to fulfill one of the items of the Peace Accord is in respect of Border Trade. To facilitate border trade (Indo-Myanmar trade in particular) steps were taken actively by construction of roads, land customs station and trade centre. Emphasis has also been given to border trade with
Health services in general, and public health services in particular, is another sector in which Mizoram has done a commendable job. Health services both in terms of infrastructure and other facilities have been expanding steadily in the state since the last two decades. In fact, the number of population served by a hospital bed in Mizoram is the best in the whole of North East.
As regards to power and energy development, planned power development in Mizoram could be said to have started since 1975-76, when Assam State Electricity Board ceased to function in Mizoram. In those days, only two towns and three villages were electrified. One notable achievement was that the State of
Moreover, to develop own source power and to accelerate the development of Mizoram, the state has taken active step. Recently, 80 MW Bairabi Hydro Electric Project has been approved by the Government at the Centre and all the necessary clearance has been completed. The 12 MW Serlui 'B' Hydel Project has also been approved and the work is to be started soon.
Another important aspect of socio-economic development is improvement in games and sports facilities. Physical exercises and other recreational facilities have been given more and more importance in the state of Mizoram. In all, there are 13 playgrounds, 12 indoor stadiums, 5 cinema halls, 3 tennis courts and about 48 registered hotels in Aizawl, the capital of Mizoram.
Another development worth mentioning in Mizoram are : establishment of State Institute of Rural Development, commissioning of 26 Community Information Centres (CIC), establishment of Regional Institute of Para Medical, establishment of Veterinary Science College, formation of Piggery Village, construction of railway connecting Bairabi, commissioning of Animal Feed Plant, commissioning of Fruit Juice concentrated Plant at Chhingchhip, construction of Referral Hospital at Falkawn, construction of Tourist Lodges and Highway Restaurants, formation of Mizoram Public Service Commission, establishment of Administrative Training Institute, etc are few examples of Mizoram's steady progress in socio-economic development.
The Government of Mizoram had in fact designated the year 2003 as the year of Human Resource Development in Service Industry, with focus on Employment Generation and Entrepreneurship. As a partial fulfillment of the Employment Generation Year, a three-month Special Training on Career Opportunities in Service Industry was conducted at Aizawl by the Tourism Department for five hundred Mizo youths.
All these activities are clear indications that Mizoram is marching ahead. This is possible solely due to the peace and tranquility that the state continues to enjoy since 1985.