New Delhi: Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga on Monday said he will not share the stage with Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he comes here to campaign for the ensuing assembly elections. PM Modi is likely to visit Mamit town in the western part of the state on October 30, and campaign for the BJP candidates. “The people of Mizoram are all Christians. When the people of Manipur (Meities) burned hundreds of churches in Manipur, they were (Mizos) totally against that kind of idea. To have sympathy with the BJP at this time will be a big minus point for my party,” Zoramthanga told BBC News in an interview.
“It will be better if the prime minister comes alone and he shares the platform by himself, and I take the stage separately by myself,” he said. Zoramthanga’s MNF is a part of the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) and an ally of the NDA at the Centre. However, the party does not work with the BJP in Mizoram.
The chief minister said that the MNF joined the NDA and NEDA as it is totally against the Congress, and does not want to be part of any alliance led by it. On giving shelter to people from Myanmar, Bangladesh and Manipur, Zoramthanga said that the Mizoram government was following the footsteps of the Centre.
“The Indian government helped the refugees from the erstwhile East Pakistan and even armed them to attain independence. We don’t arm the refugees from Myanmar but we simply provide them food and shelter on humanitarian grounds,” he said.
More than 40,000 people from Myanmar, Bangladesh and Manipur are taking shelter in the state. Zoramthanga said that it was the responsibility of the Centre to restore peace in Manipur so that people can go back to their native state.
Mizoram will vote for its 40-member assembly on November 7, and the votes will be counted on December 3.