Aizawl: Many dignitaries across the country including Prime Minister Narendra Modi and AICC president Sonia Gandhi greeted Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla as he turned 79 on Friday.
The Chief Minister’s bungalow was flooded with birthday greetings since morning. However, there was not birthday celebration unlike other years as the Chief Minister fell ill. He is suffering from high fever but his condition is stated to be stable.
Greeting the Chief Minister on his 79 birthday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted that he prayed Lal Thanhawla leads a long life. Among the dignitaries who sent birthday greetings to Chief Minister include Mizoram governor Lt Gen (Rtd) Nirbhay Sharma. Birthday greetings too came from friends, relatives, party workers, cabinet colleagues and well wishers from all over the country and abroad.
Activists of Mizoram Pradesh Youth Congress Committee (MPYCC) led by its president Vanlalawmpuii Chawngthu, who is also the lone woman legislator in Mizoram, on Friday paid a visit to the chief minister at his bungalow and blessed him with greetings.
Lal Thanhawla was born on May 19, 1938 to Hmartawnphunga Sailo and Lalsawmliani Chawngthu. Known for his adroitness in politics, Lal Thanhawla joined the underground Mizo National Front (MNF) in 1966 after a brief stint in government service. He joined the Congress in 1967 and was appointed chief organiser of the Aizawl District Congress Committee. He was elected president of the state PCC in 1973 and again in 1977 and was first elected as a legislator from the Champhai seat in 1978. He won the seat again in 1979.
In 1984 he became the chief minister, but stepped down in favour of Laldenga in 1986 to become deputy chief minister after the latter signed the Mizo Accord and headed the interim government. He was again elected in 1987 from the Serchhip constituency and was the leader of the opposition till he toppled the MNF government led by Laldenga in 1988.
After the Congress won the 1989 assembly polls Lal Thanhawla was made chief minister for a second time. Lal Thanhawla won the 1993 assembly polls from Serchhip and Zawlnuam seats and became the chief minister for the third time. After defeat in 1998 assembly polls, he brought back the Congress party to a landslide victory in the 2008 state assembly and became the chief minister for the fifth time, to be the longest serving chief minister in Mizoram.