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Mizoram backs down in Chakma standoff

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Aizawl | Thursday, Sep 25 2014 IST
 
Mizoram government today backed down to end a standoff with the state's apex students' body Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) over inclusion of Chakmas under category-I of state technical entrance examinations, after thousands of students continued protest defying a prohibitory order for assembly of more than ten people.

Thousands of protesters who marched towards the higher and technical education (technical wing) office at Chaltlang to continue the picketing ran into heavy troops of police who formed a human barricade.

At this tense situation, the offered talks and agreed to meet the MZP's demands to remove Chakmas from category-I of Mizoram (Selection of Candidates for Higher Technical Courses) Rules 1999, which is reserved for "indigenous people of Mizoram." The MZP's stand is that the Chakmas are not indigenous people of Mizoram and cannot be included in category-I.

A meeting was held at the chief minister's office conference hall between the MZP leaders and the chief minister, five ministers and H&TE officials. The officials promised the MZP leaders that Chakmas would no longer be included in category-I of the Mizoram (Selection of Candidates for Higher Technical Courses) Rules, 1999. They further promised to add the word "Mizo" to the "indigenous people."

However, whether or not the 38 Chakma students included in category-I of the state technical entrance exams 2014 be cancelled was left to be decided by the H&TE department (technical wing).

The 13 MZP leaders, who were arrested on Wednesday on charges of violation of prohibitory orders issued by the district magistrate of Aizawl under section 144 of the Cr PC, were also released unconditionally.

The agitating students then started to disperse at 1400 hours without any altercations with the police.

The advantage of being in category-I is that the successful candidates from this category chose the institutions. This year, Mizoram has a quota of 176 seats in medical and 121 seats in engineering colleges.

Children of non-Mizo permanent residents of Mizoram come under category-II and children of non-Mizo government employees working in Mizoram come under category-III. UNI ZS BM SS 1855 NNNN

-- (UNI) -- 25CA40.xml

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