Aizawl: Mizo National Front (MNF) president Zoramthanga has hailed MNF founder and former Mizoram chief minister late Laldenga as a true and charismatic leader, who was instrumental in arousing the feeling of Mizo nationalism among the Mizos.
Addressing a function to mark the 28th death anniversary of Laldenga on Saturday, Zoramthanga thanked God for having given a good person like Laldenga to the Mizos.
He said that Laldenga had inculcated in Mizos the feeling of love for their tribe and a commitment to protect and safeguard their cultures, traditions, religion and land.
“It is hard to have a person like Laldenga, who tirelessly worked for the development of Mizo people and imbibed the feeling of Mizo nationalism among the Mizos throughout his entire life,” he said.
The MNF chief also said that Laldenga was instrumental in exposing the Mizos not only to India but also to the outside world.
He said that the legendary Mizo leader continue to instill the feeling of Mizo nationalism among the present generations.
Zoramthanga added that Laldenga will be remembered for his outstanding contribution to the Mizo society as long as the Mizo community exist.
Rich tributes were paid to the legendary Mizo leader Laldenga on his 28th death anniversary on Saturday with leaders of the MNF and others laying wreaths at his burial place in Aizawl.
Born on July 11, 1927 at south Mizoram’s Pukpui village in Lunglei district, Laldenga joined the British Indian Army as havildar clerk in 1944 and was working under the then Mizo District Council after leaving the army. He, and some leaders formed the Mizo National Famine Front (MNFF) during the great Mautam famine caused by gregarious bamboo flowering during the late 1950s which resulted in population explosion of rodents. He converted the MNFF into a political party and rechristened it as the Mizo National Front (MNF) on October 22, 1961 with its main object to struggle for independence from the Indian Union.
The MNF declared independence on March one 1966 plunging Mizoram into a disturbed state for 20 years before signing peace accord on June 30, 1986 and Mizoram became a full-fledged state on February 20, 1987.
Laldenga became the first chief minister after MNF won the 1987 Assembly polls, but after 19 months, President’s Rule imposed in the state.
He never rose to political arena again due to chronic lung cancer. After he got medical treatments in New Delhi and New York, he headed for London. Just after landing on airport, he died on the way to hospital on 7 July 1990. He was honoured with the first state funeral in Mizoram on July 13, and buried at the centre of Aizawl city.