Thursday, February 29, 2024

Burnt village to become border trade centre

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Aizawl: Saikhumphai village, which was reduced to ashes by an angry mob from the neighbouring Vaphai village on April 29 this year, is poised to become a border trade centre for India and Myanmar.

The foundation stone laying ceremony at the village on Saturday was marked with a reconciliation of Saikhumphai and Vaphai which have been at daggers drawn.

Trade and commerce minister Lalrinliana Sailo, who laid the foundation stone, planted banyan tree and threw a feast a peace, to mark the historic day.

He let the two village heads shook hands as a sign of reconciliation before the gathering.

Saikhumphai village chairman T Lalchawivela expressed gratitude to the Mizoram government for giving constant care and attention the homeless villagers who have been living in silpaulin tents since the arson. “The government can build the border trade centre anywhere in the village and no villager is going to claim land compensation for construction of the border trade centre,” he announced.

Vaphai village council president Saithansiama, who also spoke on the occasion, thanked Lalrinliana Sailo for his peace initiatives. “Man cannot change God’s way. I hope we will continue to live in peace,” he said.

Lalrinliana Sailo appealed the people of the two villages to bury the past and look forward to the future of Indo-Myanmar border trade that would bring tremendous development to the state.

He said the central government has sanctioned Rs 8 crore for building border trade centre at Saikhumphai. Of this, Rs 50 lakh has been released for starting the works. Of the Rs 50 lakh, Rs 20 lakh will be spent for land development and Rs 15 lakh each for transit camp and fencing the centre. (UNI)

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